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The Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum 2018 Trophy will be awarded to Gen. John R. “Jack” Dailey for Lifetime Achievement. In the category of Current Achievement, the Trophy will be awarded to Shaesta Waiz of Dream Soar Inc. The recipients will receive their awards March 27 at a black-tie dinner in Washington, D.C.
Established in 1985, the award recognizes outstanding achievements in the fields of aerospace science and technology and their history. As in past years, Trophy winners receive a miniature version of “The Web of Space,” a sculpture by artist John Safer.
“The winners of the 2018 Trophy have played a significant role in inspiring the next generation of innovators and engineers,” said Chris Browne, interim director of the museum. “Gen. Dailey has spent his life serving our country in the aerospace industry, most recently as director of the National Air and Space Museum, and Shaesta Waiz continues to motivate young people after her extraordinary flight around the world.”
2018 Trophy Award Recipients
Dailey receives the 2018 Lifetime Achievement Trophy for his distinguished career of over 60 years of service to the United States in all aspects of aviation and space. He began his career as a Marine aviator in 1956, flew 450 combat missions during two tours in Vietnam, held several leadership positions before becoming Brigadier General in 1982, received his fourth star in and became assistant commandant of the Marine Corps in 1990. After retiring from the Marines, he served as deputy administrator of NASA and led the restructuring of the agency. He served on the President’s Management Council and was delegate to the Research and Technology Organization in support of NATO, among several other positions. After seven years at NASA, Dailey became the director of the National Air and Space Museum where he led the museum through a period of great expansion in both building space and programming. In 2003, the museum opened the Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center adding a new dimension to the display and conservation of the museum’s collection. In 2012, space shuttle Discovery was welcomed to the facility. Under his tenure, the museum greatly expanded its educational on-site and online programming, especially in the area of STEM subjects.
The 2018 Current Achievement winner is a pilot, founder of the nonprofit organization Dreams Soar Inc. and an advocate for the rights of girls and women around the world. Originally from Afghanistan and having overcome difficult circumstances in her own life, Waiz realized the importance of inspiring others to live their dreams. She created Dreams Soar Inc. and uses aviation as a means to inspire and educate youth about STEM careers. Last year, she embarked on a solo flight around the world in a Beechcraft Bonanza A36, where she traveled to five continents, visited 22 countries, and personally inspired over 3,000 children and young adults. On Oct. 4, 2017, with the completion of the flight, Waiz became the youngest woman to circumnavigate the world solo in a single-engine airplane. The purpose of the trip was to engage, empower and motivate youth, especially girls, to explore STEM-related fields and aviation education. Waiz and Dreams Soar focused much of their attention on children from low socioeconomic environments and regions not supportive of women’s rights and education. The organization continues to promote STEM education to young people today.
More information about the National Air and Space Museum Trophy and a complete list of past winners are available at Trophy.
The National Air and Space Museum Trophy event is made possible through the support of BAE Systems Inc., Atlas Air Worldwide, The Hillside Foundation, The Claude Moore Charitable Foundation, Pratt & Whitney and Sierra Nevada Corp.
The National Air and Space Museum building on the National Mall in Washington, D.C., is located at Sixth Street and Independence Avenue S.W. The museum’s Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center is located in Chantilly, Va., near Washington Dulles International Airport. Both facilities are open daily from 10 a.m. until 5:30 p.m. (closed Dec. 25). Admission is free, but there is a $15 fee for parking at the Udvar-Hazy Center.
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