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NASA Manager Receives Service Award
Betty Humphery
Marshall Space Flight Center, Huntsville, Ala.
(Phone: 256.544.0034)
News release: 04-290

Willie Love Willie J. Love, assistant director of the Equal Opportunity Office at NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala., has been recognized by Alabama A&M University in Huntsville for organizing university workshops that help graduates succeed in the workplace.

Alabama A&M President Dr. John T. Gibson presented the Legacy Award to Love at the 35th annual conference of the Business and Industry Cluster, a cooperative partnership between educators and executives working to provide quality programs and experiences for the university's students. A primary goal of the Business and Industry Cluster is developing outreach programs to help students transition from university life to the business world. The group also helps the university develop curriculum, faculty-student exchange programs, internships, cooperative education programs, graduate job placement and fundraising.

Love received the award for his service to the cluster group, specifically for his role in designing Student Professional Development workshops for university students. The workshops bring together industry and business leaders to educate students about the workplace and contributions graduates can make.

Love began work at NASA in 1979 as a co-op student. He earned a bachelor's degree in business and personnel management in 1980 from Alabama A&M. He then joined NASA full-time in 1980 in the Marshall Personnel Office. In 1991, he was selected to serve as executive assistant on the Marshall Center director's executive staff. In 1992, he was assigned to the Equal Opportunity Office as a specialist.

He has served in his current NASA position since 1994, responsible for managing a comprehensive program to assure equal opportunity in all Marshall operations as it carries out the Vision for Space Exploration -- NASA's plan to return the Space Shuttle to flight, complete the International Space Station and develop human and robotic missions to explore the Solar System.

Love has received numerous awards during his NASA career. In 1998, he was honored with the Silver Snoopy Award for outstanding performance contributing to flight safety and mission success. In 2000, he was named a Space Flight Awareness Honoree, the highest form of recognition given to an employee by the NASA Space Flight Awareness Program.

Among Love's numerous business and community activities, he serves as a member of the NASA Exemplary Education Review Board, which reviews all NASA centers' education programs for NASA Headquarters. Love also serves on the advisory board of Atlanta's Spelman College Model Institutions for Excellence. The group of six minority-serving institutions, selected by NASA and the National Science Foundation, promotes diversity in science, technology, engineering and mathematics. He is a board member of the United Negro College Fund at Oakwood College in Huntsville; a United Way allocation committee member; chairman of the Northern League Athletic Association; and past president of West Mastin Lake Elementary School PTA.

A native of Birmingham, Love graduated from A.H. Parker High School in 1976. He and his wife -- the former Rickshel Sanchez -- have three children and live in Huntsville.

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