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Citizen Astronauts from Blue Origin, SpaceX, and Virgin Galactic Commercial Space Missions to Appear Together at 2021 ASCEND in Las Vegas


October 22, 2021 – Reston, Va. – Astronauts from the three different commercial space experiences that occurred in 2021 will appear on stage together in Las Vegas on Monday, 15 November, during 2021 ASCEND.ASCEND is the interdisciplinary community focused on building humanity’s off-world future faster, powered by AIAA. Confirmed speakers include:

  • Blue Origin New Shepard Mission NS-18 (October 2021)
    • Glen de Vries, Vice-Chair, Life Sciences & Healthcare, Dassault Systèmes; and Co-Founder, Medidata
  • SpaceX Inspiration4 Mission (September 2021)
    • Jared Isaacman, Inspiration4 Commander
    • Sian Proctor, Inspiration4 Mission Pilot
  • Virgin Galactic Unity22 Mission (July 2021)

The exclusive gathering of these citizen astronauts to share firsthand accounts of their missions epitomizes the ASCEND spirit of community and global partnership. They will discuss the impact of their missions, as well as their experiences during training, flight, and post-launch. The speakers will appear in person in the following 2021 ASCENDsessions:

Opening Keynote
Speakers: Jared Isaacman, Sian Proctor
Monday, 15 November, 0730–0900 hrs PT

Lunch Plenary Session: Citizen Astronauts
Moderator: Kari Byron,Producer and Television Personality, MythbustersWhite Rabbit Project; Host, Crash Test World
Speakers: Sirisha Bandla, Glen de Vries, Jared Isaacman, Sian Proctor
Monday, 15 November, 1145–1245 hrs PT

2021 ASCENDis set for 8–10 and 15–17 November, showcasing a hybrid blend of in-person programming in Las Vegas (Caesars Forum) and Washington, D.C., and online programming on all six days.

The Public is Invited to Attend 2021 ASCEND
ASCEND is an event open to everyone who loves space. The public is invited to register nowat the best rates. The full agenda and confirmed speakers are available at

Registration for in-person attendance is limited and only open until 10 November, to ensure all AIAA Health and Safety protocols are met.

Press Passes Available to Media
Journalists interested in covering the citizen astronauts and the full ASCEND program at Caesars Forum in Las Vegas in person should contact rebeccag@aiaa.orgfor credentialing, or request an Online Press Pass here.

Media Contact: Rebecca B. Gray,, 804-397-5270 cell

Powered by AIAA, ASCEND promotes the collaborative, interdisciplinary, outcomes-driven community of professionals, students, and enthusiasts around the world who are accelerating humanity’s progress toward our off-world future! For more information, visit,or follow ASCEND on Twitter,Facebook,LinkedIn,and Instagram.

About AIAA
The American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA) is the world’s largest aerospace technical society. With nearly 30,000 individual members from 91 countries, and 100 corporate members, AIAA brings together industry, academia, and government to advance engineering and science in aviation, space, and defense. For more information, visit,or follow AIAA on Twitter,Facebook,LinkedIn,and Instagram.

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