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Wisconsin spaceport committee moves closer to formation

Sheboygan, Wis. - Gov. Jim Doyle selected two local residents as nominees for appointment to the Wisconsin Aerospace Authority - both of whom expressed eagerness about their forthcoming role in shaping a hub for future space travel.

Mark Hanna, a city alderman, and Judy Schieble, co-director of an educational rocket program, will join several already-named nominees for the commission, which will be responsible for the development of an aerospace industry in the state.

Schieble, who works with the elementary school-age rocket launch in the Rockets for Schools program, said she was honored to receive the appointment from Doyle's office.

If confirmed by the state Senate, Hanna and Schieble will join former astronaut and Oribital Technologies Corp. project director Mark Lee, Wauwatosa resident Thomas Mullooly, a member of Foley and Lardner LLP's energy industry team, and the director of the Wisconsin Space Grant Consortium, a position currently held by University of Wisconsin-Green Bay professor R. Aileen Yingst.

According to Senate Bill 352, Doyle will nominate six members, and the president of the Senate and the speaker of the Assembly will each appoint one member, each for a three-year term. All nominations remain to be confirmed in a hearing likely to take place in January.
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The authority will support the Sheboygan Development Corp. in its efforts to turn the Sheboygan Armory into a $17 million museum called the Great Lakes Aerospace, Science, and Education Center.

The authority also will investigate ways to attract and assist aerospace companies interested in developing technologies and other enterprises in the area. George French, who manages two companies that are currently developing vehicles for commercial spaceflight - Rocketplane Limited Inc. and Rocketplane Kistler Corp. - said he plans to launch sub-orbital and orbital passenger flights out of Sheboygan within 10 years.

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