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news - 09.12.06


(Washington, D.C., Tuesday, September 12, 2006) - The Washington D.C.-based Arthur C. Clarke Foundation today announced the 2006 winners of the Arthur C. Clarke Awards. In keeping with recent practice, two Awards will be presented.

The “Arthur C. Clarke Lifetime Achievement Award” recognizes “an individual, a group or an entity that exemplifies the values and accomplishments of Sir Arthur's life. The award honors substantial and enduring contributions that relate the sciences and arts in meeting the challenges of contemporary life and the needs of tomorrow.”

The 2006 Lifetime Achievement Award winner is long-time CBS Evening News anchorman Walter Cronkite.

The “Arthur C. Clarke Innovator’s Award” recognizes “initiatives or new inventions that have had recent impact on or hold particular promise for satellite communications and society, and stand as distinguished examples of innovative thinking.”

This year’s Innovator’s Award winner is Las Vegas-based hotel entrepreneur and leader in private space initiatives Robert Bigelow.

One of broadcasting’s strongest supporters of space flight, Walter Cronkite was relentless in his better than round-the-clock coverage of the Apollo XI Moon mission. He co-anchored that landmark flight with (later knighted) Sir Arthur Clarke, and joined Clarke in anchoring the launches of Apollo 12 and 15. The two men became lifelong friends, and Sir Arthur joined with the Foundation in extending its 2006 award invitation to Cronkite.

Robert Bigelow, selected by the Foundation’s trustees even before the successful Russian launch of Bigelow Aerospace’s Genesis I, is leading the way for private sector individuals willing to advance space exploration with minimum reliance on government programs. A pioneering part of Bigelow’s belief in bringing space closer to people’s lives, Genesis I represents a first step in human-rated expandable habitats suited to industrial, commercial, and “just-for-fun” use.

Former Clarke Lifetime Achievement winners are science fiction writer Ben Bova; former Matra Marconi Space board chairman Claude Goumy; retired Space Systems Loral chairman Robert Berry; and first Intelsat director general Santiago Astrain. Clarke Innovator winners include Dr. Brad Edwards, for leading in the design of a space elevator to move cargo to the Clarke Orbit from the Earth's surface; and D.K. Sachdev and Dr. S. Joseph Campanella, for designing and implementing the world’s first audio broadcasting (Worldspace) satellite.

The Awards will be presented before an invited audience at Washington’s Cosmos Club on Tuesday, October 3. For information, contact Foundation Secretary Scott Chase at scottchase@verizon.net or 301/879-1613.


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