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Smithsonian Institution National Air and Space Museum’s Wall of Honor engraved to honor Professor and Neil A. Armstrong Chair in Aerospace Policy John M. Horack

The Smithsonian Institution National Air and Space Museum’s Wall of Honor recently received a new addition. John M. Horack, professor and Neil A. Armstrong Chair in Aerospace Policy, has been added to the distinguished list in recognition of his contribution to the nation’s aviation and space exploration heritage.

HorackHorackSpanning over 30 years in the field of space-flight and exploration, Horack’s work has been transformative. His career launched at the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) George C. Marshall Space Flight Center in 1987 where his expertise guided a number of high-profile projects, including cutting-edge research into gamma-ray bursts.

Now, as inaugural Neil A. Armstrong Chair in Aerospace Policy at The Ohio State University, Horack uses his joint appointment in the College of Engineering and John Glenn College of Public Affairs to connect the university’s expertise in aerospace policy and aerospace engineering. The resulting linkage aims to propel the university forward in the global spaceflight community.

Horack described his gratitude for the honor. “When the package came in the mail, saying that my name was going up on the wall, I was surprised. There are many women and men who have made far greater contributions, and it’s an honor to simply be a contributing member of the U.S. space exploration community,” he said.

“At the same time, I’m very gratified to learn that others have taken some note of my work, of course, and hopefully this will also help raise the visibility of the excellent space-related work we all do here at Ohio State.”

A tribute from long-time friends and colleagues of Horack, father and son Michael Griffith, PhD, and Scott Griffith, paved the way for the inclusion of Horack’s name on the Wall of Honor.

“As a member of the Smithsonian, I received a call for nominees for its Space Exploration Wall of Fame,” said Michael, retired vice president, R&D, ARCO Chemical Company. Immediately he thought of Horack.

“John is a brilliant scientist, a great leader and an articulate spokesman, with a career at NASA of quite important achievements. His being named the inaugural Neil A. Armstrong Chair at The Ohio State University validates the significance of his accomplishments.”

Scott, vice president, marketing, at Cardiac Science, shares his father’s sentiments.

“John’s contributions in astrophysics and space exploration speak for themselves. He’s earned a place on the Wall of Honor after three decades of furthering American accomplishments in space science and astrophysics.”

In addition to his work at the university, Horack serves as special advisor to the president of the International Astronautical Federation, and will be standing for election in October 2018 to become the organization’s next president.  A profile of Horack can be found on the Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center’s website.

The Wall of Honor, located at the Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center in Chantilly, Virginia, has over 29,000 inscriptions, each signifying an individual’s or organization’s commitment to and passion for flight. The engravings serve as an inspiration to the center’s millions of annual visitors.