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08.15.05
 
NASA Commentator Bruce BuckinghamBruce Buckingham
NASA News Chief





Bruce Buckingham is the NASA News Chief for the KSC Media Services Division. He has served as a NASA Public Information Officer and Agency spokesman at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center since September 1985. As News Chief, he is responsible for the timely dissemination of information regarding NASA and KSC-related events to the public and various news organizations. Also, he is the managing editor of the official KSC newspaper, Spaceport News.

In addition to his current News Chief duties, in 2004 Buckingham was named KSC's Communications Point of Contact for the Agency's Exploration Systems Mission Directorate. In this capacity, he oversees the outreach efforts at KSC regarding communicating to the public NASA's Visionary goals to return humans to the Moon and eventually on to Mars.

He serves as one of NASA’s primary spokesmen, working daily with the media to ensure they have accurate and timely information regarding NASA space activities at KSC. He also delivers live commentary for Space Shuttle launches, and launch and mission commentary for unmanned vehicles that carry NASA payloads. In this capacity, he has been the voice of NASA for 27 Space Shuttle missions, including the more recent launch of Columbia on STS-107, and for more than 20 NASA expendable launch vehicle missions that lifted off from both Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida and Vandenberg Air Force Base in California.

Buckingham was raised in the Melbourne/Palm Bay, Fla., area, in the shadow of NASA's early launch years and the Apollo moon missions. He graduated from Eau Gallie High School in Melbourne in 1973, and attended Brevard Community College. He later graduated from Oral Roberts University in Tulsa, Okla., with a Bachelor's degree in Psychology in 1978. He was accepted into the Master of Business Administration program at the Florida Institute of Technology in 1980.

In 1979, he began work for then Congressman Bill Nelson, spending three years in his district office in Melbourne and four years in Washington, D.C., as a senior legislative assistant on space-related issues.

While working for Nelson, who served on the House of Representatives Space Subcommittee and whose district included KSC, Buckingham became intricately familiar with the space agency while tracking congressional legislation and following space-related concerns. Some of his legislative actions helped secure support for the Hubble Space Telescope, the Mars Observer, and kept options for building additional Shuttle orbiters open. Buckingham was also very involved in prompting the Federal Aviation Authority to increase penalties for errant pilots who stray into controlled airspace near KSC during launch and landing operations.

Buckingham has received numerous individual and group achievement awards during his 25-year government career. Most recently he was honored with the 2004 Space Communicator Award from the Rotary National Award for Space Achievement Foundation. This award was granted for his public information efforts following the Shuttle Columbia accident.

In 2004, Buckingham completed a special nine-month assignment as management assistant to KSC Deputy Director Dr. Woodrow Whitlow.

Buckingham is married to the former Michele Bosies of Baltimore, Md. They have two children.