Calhoun to Honor Outstanding Aerospace Technicians from North Alabama


Calhoun Community College, in conjunction with several local aerospace industry partners, will honor outstanding aerospace technicians during the 5th Annual Aerospace Technician Recognition Awards dinner to be held Thursday, April 11, 2013, beginning at 5:00 pm at the U.S. Space and Rocket Center’s Davidson Center for Space Exploration.

“This event is one of the premier activities in our region designed to recognize and honor the many significant contributions of our local aerospace technician workforce," commented Dr. Marilyn Beck, Calhoun president.

Guest speaker for the event is author and former NASA engineer Homer Hickman.  Hickman, who at last count had written 15 books, is author of the critically acclaimed New York Times number one bestseller Rocket Boys, which was made into the feature film October Sky.  The book/film are also being developed as a Broadway musical.

Hickam was raised in Coalwood, West Virginia, the second son of the mine superintendent, Homer Hickman, Sr. and his wife, Elise.  After graduating from Virginia Tech, he served in the 4th Infantry Division in Vietnam.  After leaving the military, Hickman became an engineer for the Army Missile Command in Huntsville.  With NASA, he trained astronauts and designed spacecraft, which he wrote about in the memoir, Paco:  The Cat Who Meowed in Space.  Hickman is also an amateur paleontologist who has discovered two Tyrannosaurus rexes, detailed in the fictional novel, The Dinosaur Hunter.

Master of Ceremonies for the evening will be Bill “Bubba” Bussey, co-host of the nationally-syndicated Rick and Bubba Show.  The program is broadcast every week day on over 60 stations from Florida to Alaska, as well as on XM Radio and The Nashville Network.

The highlight of the evening is the recognition of each sponsoring company’s Aerospace Technician of the Year and the presentation of the 2013 Regional Aerospace Technician of the Year honoree, selected by representatives from each sponsoring company.
In addition to Calhoun, sponsoring organizations for the event are AI Signal Research Inc., ATK, The Boeing Company, ERC, Inc., INFOPRO Corp., SpaceTEC, and United Launch Alliance.

For more information about the event, contact Diane Peck, Workforce Solutions coordinator, 256.306.2515 or email

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