Richard H. Truly

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Vice Admiral Richard H. Truly, USN (Ret), former administrator of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), is the Director of the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) and a member of the Board of Directors of the Space Foundation.[1][2]

From the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) Director's Page: Richard H. Truly, Director, National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), Vice Admiral, U.S. Navy (Ret.)

"Richard Truly is Director of the Department of Energy's National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) which is operated by the Midwest Research Institute (MRI), Battelle, and Bechtel. He is also the Executive Vice President of MRI. NREL is the country's premier facility for the research, development and deployment of energy from the sun, wind and plant life. NREL is developing new technologies to benefit both the environment and the economy, and serves as the focal point for most of DOE's renewable energy programs, and several energy efficiency programs. Truly's appointment became effective in May 1997.

"Prior to joining NREL, Truly was Vice President of the Georgia Institute of Technology, and Director of the Georgia Tech Research Institute (GTRI) from 1992 - 1997. GTRI performs engineering and scientific research for a wide variety of federal, state, and industry customers, and is the largest research unit integral to Georgia Tech.

"Truly served as NASA's eighth Administrator under President George Herbert Walker Bush from 1989-92, and his career in aviation and space programs of the U.S. Navy and NASA spanned 35 years. He retired as a Vice Admiral after a Navy career of more than 30 years. As a naval aviator, test pilot and astronaut, he logged over 7,500 hours and made over 300 carrier arrested landings, day and night.

"Truly's astronaut career included work in the Air Force's Manned Orbiting Laboratory program, and NASA's Apollo, Skylab, Apollo-Soyuz and Space Shuttle programs. He piloted the 747/Enterprise approach and landing tests in 1977. He lifted off in November 1981 as pilot aboard Columbia, the first shuttle to be reflown into space, establishing a world circular orbit altitude record. He commanded Challenger in August-September 1983, the first night launch/landing mission of the Space Shuttle program.

"Truly was the first commander of Naval Space Command from 1983 - 1986, the principal naval space operations element of the Department of Defense. He became the first naval component commander of the U. S. Space Command upon its formation in 1984. He was responsible for building the Naval Space Command, and for directing strategic and tactical space-based support for deployed Navy and Marine Corps units.

"Still on active duty, he was called back to NASA as Associate Administrator for Space Flight in 1986, and led the accident investigation of the Challenger accident. He spearheaded the painstaking rebuilding of the Space Shuttle, including winning approval of President Ronald Reagan and the Congress for building of Endeavor to replace the lost Challenger.

"Under his leadership, NASA matured the Space Shuttle, solidified Space Station plans and initiated new space science and aeronautics programs. He initiated major acquisition reforms and significantly streamlined the agency. He continually placed a very strong emphasis on NASA's math and science educational programs.

"President Reagan awarded the Presidential Citizen's Medal to Admiral Truly in 1989.

"Truly's numerous NASA awards include two Distinguished Service Medals, the Outstanding Leadership Medal, the Exceptional Service Medal, and two Space Flight Medals. His military decorations include the Defense Distinguished and Superior Service Medals, two Legions of Merit and the Navy Distinguished Flying Cross.

"He received the Harmon International Trophy presented by President Reagan, the Robert J. Collier Trophy (twice), the Robert H. Goddard Space Trophy (twice), the Werner Von Braun Space Trophy, the Rotary National Space Trophy, the Society of Experimental Test Pilots Ivan C. Kincheloe and James H. Doolittle Awards, the Federation Aeronautique Internationale Gold Space Medal, and the General Thomas D. White Space Trophy. He is a member of the U.S. Astronaut Hall of Fame, Georgia Tech Academy of Distinguished Engineering Alumni, the Georgia Aviation Hall of Fame, a Distinguished Alumnus of Kappa Alpha Order, a Distinguished Eagle Scout, and has received the Daughters of the American Revolution Medal of Honor and the Sons of the American Revolution Gold and Silver Good Citizen Awards.

"Truly is a member of the National Academy of Engineering, and is the recipient of honorary Doctorates of Science from Millsaps College and Duquesne University, and honorary Doctorates of Engineering from Colorado School of Mines and Stevens Institute of Technology.

"Active in national and community affairs, he has served on the Board of Visitors to the U.S. Naval Academy, the Defense Policy Board (1994-1998), and the Army Science Board (1994-2001). He is a member of the Colorado Governor's Commission on Science and Technology, and on the Advisory Board of the Wirth Chair in Environmental and Community Development Policy, University of Colorado at Denver.

"Richard Truly is a native of Fayette, Mississippi, born on November 12, 1937."