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On July 20, 1969, a greater percentage of earth’s population followed the first moon landing than any previous event in history. After their flight, the astronauts toured over 20 countries on every continent. President Nixon proclaimed them “the best possible ambassadors America could have on this earth.” What was the political and foreign policy significance of the Apollo program, and what is its enduring legacy? How should Apollo-era space diplomacy inform foreign relations today?

Join Michael Collins, Ellen Stofan, Charles Bolden, Teasel Muir-Harmony, and John Logsdon for a conversation about the history and future of space diplomacy.


  • Maj. Gen. Michael Collins, Apollo 11 astronaut and former Assistant Secretary of State for Public Affairs
  • Dr. Ellen Stofan, John and Adrienne Mars Director of the Smithsonian's National Air and Space Museum
  • Maj. Gen. Charles Bolden, U.S. Science Envoy for Space and former NASA Administrator and space shuttle commander


  • Dr. Teasel Muir-Harmony, Curator of Apollo Spacecraft, Smithsonian's National Air and Space Museum
  • Dr. John Logsdon, Professor Emeritus of Political Science and International Affairs at George Washington University's Elliott School of International Affairs

This event is free and will take place at the Lisner Auditorium at George Washington University. 

This program is co-sponsored by the Smithsonian's National Air and Space Museum, the U.S. State Department, and the George Washington University Space Policy Institute.

Apollo program