Partying Like It’s 1969- Pioneers Celebrate Apollo!

What a banquet! Our event “Reflections on Apollo: 50 Years since ‘One Small Step'” was a great success! Jim Banke moderated a fantastic discussion with Apollo Legends Lee Solid, Bob Sieck, and John Tribe. We heard where each panelist watched Apollo 11, the lessons they learned from Apollo and incorporated into the shuttle program, and their thoughts on modern space exploration culture versus the culture around Apollo 11.

We also had special guests George English, founding member of the Pioneers and long-term KSC Executive, and Al Crews, test pilot and original US Air Force astronaut. Also present was Silver Snoopy recipient Janis Seraphine- who also worked under Wernher von Braun!

We’d like to give a huge thank you to the evening’s corporate sponsor- Lockheed Martin, and to John Gould of Living Space for advertising and writing about the event! You can check out his site here:

More pictures will be posted soon but in the meantime, you can check out the entire collection on our Facebook page:

Thanks everyone who joined us! We look forward to seeing everyone in October for our next event!

Tickets on Sale for Spring 2019 Event!

It is that time of year again! Buy your tickets now for the Missile, Space, and Range Pioneers Spring Banquet!    

May 10th, 2019

Courtyard by Marriott Cocoa Beach

5:30 PM Social Hour | 7:00 PM Dinner

We will be honoring the 50th anniversary of Apollo with a program called: Reflections on Apollo: 50 Years since “One Small Step”.  Our event will feature Lee Solid, Senior Executive of Rockwell’s Florida Operations , John Tribe, Chief Engineer of Launch Support at Kennedy Space Center, and Bob Sieck, Apollo Test Engineer and Space Shuttle Launch Director.

Corporate tables are available on request. Please contact

Tickets are limited so purchase yours today!

The menu is your choice of:

  • Grilled mahi-mahi with mango black bean salad
  • Mojito chicken with mandarin oranges,
  • Vegetarian stuffed portobello mushrooms,
  • All served with salad, potatoes, vegetables, and dessert


Upcoming Events!

Lecture with Tory Bruno!

Mark your calendars for our upcoming events!

Join us as we co-host with Florida Institute of Technology for a lecture by ULA’s CEO Tory Bruno! Tickets are free and must be reserved in advance. Find out more HERE.

46th Space Congress

We are looking for volunteers for the 46th Space Congress! We are looking for volunteers for February 26-28. Email us to sign up to volunteer! Find out more HERE.


We are looking for volunteers for NARCON on March 2! Email us to sign up to volunteer! Find out more HERE.

Pioneers Spring Banquet

Mark your calendars! The next Pioneers banquet will be April 26th at the Courtyard by Marriott in Cocoa Beach. More details to follow! 

President’s Message: What a Year!

What a wonderful year 2018 has been for the Pioneers. We thank all of you for your support this year.

We had a fantastic banquet in the Spring honoring our roots and Armed Forces Day with Brigadier General Wayne Monteith. We heard about the Drive to 48 launches a year and we heard about Merritt Island High’s “Stangsat” CubeSat.

It was hard to follow such a great event with another, but we managed to do so with our Fall banquet. We celebrated the many accomplishments of United Launch Alliance with a speech by Ron Fortson. We heard from the incredibly talented Weiss School students once again, updating us on the status of their CubeSat (which has since launched!) and their education and policy initiatives.

We had a great year with you all and look forward to doing more and greater things in 2019. I leave you all now with a quote from the crew of Apollo 8, 50 years after their historic mission.

“From the crew of Apollo 8, we close with good night, good luck, a Merry Christmas – and God bless all of you, all of you on the good Earth.”

-Chelsea Partridge, President


President’s Message: Fall 2018 Banquet

Thank you everyone for showing up to our Fall Banquet! We had a fantastic turnout!

We want to particularly thank our speakers, Ron Fortson of ULA, and the students of The Weiss School. We also would like to specially thank our corporate sponsors, Boeing and Space Florida.

John Gould, a writer who attended the banquet, wrote a great article about the event. I hope you read and enjoy!

Thank you again to everyone for your support. We look forward to seeing you in the Spring for more events and banquets.

-Chelsea Partridge, President


Photo Gallery: Fall 2018 Banquet

Buy Tickets Now! Fall Banquet October 26, 2018

Join the Missile, Space and Range Pioneers on Friday October 26th, 2018  for an evening celebrating United Launch Alliance’s 130 successful launches (and counting!)

Space industry professionals, veterans, and enthusiasts are invited to the Space Coast’s Courtyard by Marriott located in Cocoa Beach for this event.

Ron Fortson, Director of Program Management, Commercial and Government Programs, will discuss United Launch Alliance and how they save lives, explore the universe and connect the world. Audience Q&A will follow.

Social and networking hour begins at 5:30 PM and dinner will be served at 7:00 PM. A cash bar will also be open.

Cocktail attire is recommended.

Students/Active Military: $35
Pioneer Members: $45
Non-Members: $60

Corporate tables are available on request. Please contact

TICKET SALES HAVE ENDED! If you would like to purchase a ticket, contact

Our Speaker

Myron Fortson is director, Program Management for United Launch Alliance (ULA). In this role, he leads the management and execution of all launch service programs for ULA’s government and commercial customers. Fortson previously served as the director of Mission Management and the director of Operations Engineering.

Prior to joining ULA, Fortson had a distinguished Air Force career, retiring as a colonel in 2013 following 26 years of service. While serving in the military, Fortson held a variety of assignments in engineering, operations, acquisition and staff units. He began
as an intercontinental ballistic missile trajectory engineer at Strategic Air Command in Omaha in 1987. In 1991, Fortson served at the Space and Missile Systems Center (SMC) as a Space Test Program mission planner and spacecraft project engineer. In 1996, he was assigned to the National Reconnaissance Office (NRO) as a deputy director of engineering for satellite operations and a spacecraft and launch program manager for a joint space-based radar program. Fortson moved to the Pentagon in 2001 as a satellite control network program element monitor on Headquarters Air Force staff. Following this assignment, he returned to the SMC as the counterspace systems chief engineer and executive officer for the three-star commander. In 2005, Fortson served as the operation officer and commander of the 1st Space Launch Squadron for the Delta II launch system at Cape Canveral Air Force Station, Fla. He also served as deputy commander for the 45th Operations Group conducting range operations. Fortson held another short tour back at the NRO in 2009 on the director’s staff before returning to SMC as the chief of Evolved Expendable Launch Vehicle (EELV) Engineering and Operations for Atlas V and Delta IV launch systems in 2010.

Fortson received his Bachelor of Science degree in astronautical engineering from the Air Force Academy in 1987 and a Master of Business Administration from Chapman University in 1995.

Save the Date! Fall Banquet October 26, 2018

All, please​ mark your calendars for the Missile, Space, and Range Pioneers Fall banquet, as we celebrate United Launch Alliance, with a keynote by Myron Fortson, Director of Program Management for United Launch Alliance (ULA).

The event will be held Friday, October 26, 2018 at the Courtyard by Marriott in Cocoa Beach, Florida. This event is open to the public. There will be a sit down dinner and a cash bar. Social hour begins at 5:30 and dinner will be served at 7:00.

More details and ticket sales will be posted in the coming days!
Thank you for your continued support!

Buy Your Tickets Now for the 2018 Spring Banquet!

Join the Missile, Space and Range Pioneers on Friday May 18th for an evening celebrating Armed Forces Day at the Space Coast’s Courtyard by Marriott located in Cocoa Beach.

Space industry professionals, veterans, and enthusiasts are invited to a keynote talk from Brigadier General Wayne Monteith that will be followed by an audience Q&A. Brigadier General Monteith will be speaking of the history of the range and the 45th Space Wing’s accomplishments in their “Drive to 48” launches a year.

Social and networking hour begins at 5:30 PM and dinner will be served at 7:00 PM. A cash bar will also be open.

Cocktail attire is recommended.


Brigadier General Wayne R. Monteith is the Commander, 45th Space Wing, and Director, Eastern Range, Patrick Air Force Base, Florida. He leads over 13,000 military, DoD civilian and contractor personnel responsible for the processing and launching of U.S. government and commercial satellites from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Florida. General Monteith is also the final approval authority for all launches on the Eastern Range, a 15-million-square-mile area which supports an average of 15 launches per year aboard Delta, Atlas, Falcon, Navy and emerging launch vehicles. In addition, he manages wing launch and range infrastructure supporting NASA, commercial and missile test missions.

Prior to assuming his current position, General Monteith served as the Senior Military Assistant to the Secretary of the Air Force.

General Monteith has served as a Peacekeeper intercontinental
ballistic missile (ICBM) combat crew member, senior ICBM
standardization and evaluation crew commander, ICBM instructor,
chief ICBM flight testing, and command lead for a major space
acquisition program. He commanded the Air Force’s only ICBM combat crew training squadron and the 50th Space Wing where he led more than 5,300 military, DoD civilian and contractor personnel serving at 14 operating locations worldwide in support of more than 170 communications, navigation, weather and surveillance satellites with their associated systems valued at more than $66B. General Monteith has also served in various special duty capacities including MAJCOM, COCOM, HQ Air Force and OSD staff positions. He earned the Master Missile Operations designation and is a Command Space Professional.

General Monteith earned his commission as a distinguished graduate from the University of New Mexico’s Air Force ROTC program.