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January 31, 2006

NASA Public Affairs Office
Stennis Space Center, MS 39529-6000
(228) 688-3341


Six employees at NASA's Stennis Space Center were honored Tuesday, Jan. 31, with a "Silver Snoopy," the personal achievement award given to space program workers by NASA's astronaut corps.

With their families in attendance, each recipient received from astronauts Jim Reilly and Doug Hurley a Silver Snoopy pin flown on space shuttle mission STS-105. Each honoree also received a letter of commendation and certificate, both signed and presented by the astronauts.

The recipients were:

• Ronnie Rigney of Poplarville, Miss., is the space shuttle main engine project manager for NASA's Propulsion Test Directorate and is responsible for managing all aspects of testing the space shuttle main engines on Stennis Space Center's A-1 and A-2 test stands.

• Lynn Heberling of Pearl River, La., is a management support assistant for NASA's Program Development Directorate and performs administrative duties. She received the award for her work as a management support assistant in the Office of Safety and Mission Assurance.

• Kirk Foster of Poplarville, Miss., is senior metrologist for Applied Geo Technologies, providing calibration lab services and accurate rocket engine test data to NASA's propulsion programs. AGT, a contractor to NASA, is owned by the Mississippi Band of Choctaw Indians.

• Robert Ryan of Diamondhead, Miss., is lead scientist for Science Systems and Applications Inc. and manages the systems engineering section for SSAI, which supports NASA's Applied Sciences Directorate.

• James Biles of Pascagoula, Miss., is a facilities engineer for Jacobs Sverdrup in NASA's Test Operations Group. He works in the space center's cryogenic fuel and high-pressure industrial water facilities.

• Greg Conn of Bay St. Louis, Miss., is a Jacobs Sverdrup engineering technician who certifies the operation of the test stands' valve systems at Stennis Space Center's A and B test complexes. Jacobs Sverdrup supports Stennis Space Center's rocket engine testing mission.

The Silver Snoopy award, initiated 35 years ago, recognizes individuals for professional dedication and outstanding efforts that greatly enhance the safety and success of human space flight missions. An astronaut always presents the Silver Snoopy because it is the astronauts' own award for outstanding performance, contributing to flight safety and mission success.

Astronaut Jim Reilly was selected by NASA in December 1994, and flew on STS-89 in 1998 and STS-104 in 2001. Currently assigned to the crew of STS-117, he has logged more than 517 hours in space, including three spacewalks totaling 16 hours and 30 minutes.

Hurley became an astronaut in 2000. He graduated magna cum laude with honors from New Orleans' Tulane University in 1988. He will serve in technical assignments until assigned to a space flight. Hurley has logged more than 3,000 hours in more than 20 types of aircraft.


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