To honor San Antonio’s Aviation and Aerospace History, the Dee Howard Foundation (DHF) joined together, in collaboration with other local, state, and national partners, to organize the San Antonio Aviation and Aerospace Hall of Fame 2019 Awards Dinner, which took place on April 4th. The event was hosted by GDC Technics at their state of the art hangar at Port San Antonio.
The event, attended by nearly 700 people, including seventy-five students and educators, featured the induction of 2019 honorees and the presentation of the second annual DHF STEM Education Excellence Award (SEEA).
Attendees enjoyed a reception with entertainment provided by the 323D Army Band, dinner with the presentation of the Colors by the 433rd Color Guard and the singing of the National Anthem by country music singer and songwriter Rebecca Henricks. There was also a display of current and vintage U.S. military and civilian aircraft including a C-5, F-16, and F/18-Super Hornet. There were also exhibits by some of DHF’s education partners, including the Blue Sky Foundation.
“It was an absolutely fantastic event,” said Lee Siudzinski, Executive Director of the Blue Sky Foundation and board member of the National Coalition for Aviation and Space Education (NCASE). “I was provided a booth and was able to share materials about NCASE and the Blue Sky Foundation – there was a lot of interest.”
Attendees, came from throughout Texas, Wisconsin, Alabama and Washington D.C., and included three former astronauts, two Tuskegee Airmen, and at least three members of the San Antonio City Council.
Art A. Hall, Councilman District 2 and Mayor Pro Tem of the City of San Antonio, opened the 2019 Awards Dinner and Bonnie J. Dunbar, PhD was the Keynote Speaker. Dr. Dunbar is the TEES Eminent Research Professor at Texas A&M University-College Station, Texas, a five-time Shuttle Astronaut and former president & CEO of the Museum of Flight in Seattle, Washington. Richard Perez, President and CEO of the San Antonio Chamber of Commerce, was the MC.
“The mission of The Dee Howard Foundation is to nurture our innovators of the future,” said Wayne I. Fagan, Chair of the Dee Howard Foundation. “Our capstone event each year is to host students, teachers, principals, and superintendents at our annual Hall of Fame Awards Dinner, where we induct a new class of honorees into the San Antonio Aviation and Aerospace Hall of Fame.” The inductees this year were Earl and Tom Slick, Gen. Mark A. Welsh III, and Lt. Col. Francis R. (Dick) Scobee. Dr. June Scobee Rodgers accepted the award on behalf of the Scobee Family.
Receiving this year’s DHF STEM Education Excellence Awards (SEEA) were Lisa Rollins, a Science Academic Support Teacher (AST) at Cody Elementary School in Northside ISD and Angela Ortiz Pichardo, a STEM/Aeronautics/Aviation teacher at Bob Hope Elementary in Southwest ISD.
“It was a truly inspiring evening for all,” said Fagan.