The Heinlein Prize, a cash award of $500,000 to one or more individuals for practical accomplishments in the field of commercial space activities, was announced today at the 54th International Aeronautical Congress underway in Bremen, Germany.
Trustees for the award emphasize that the prize, which will be given as often as annually, is for effort by an individual, not government or corporate sponsored activities, and is intended to be world-wide in scope. The trustees will form an Advisory Board to review nominations and propose candidates. The Prize will be awarded on July 7 of those years in which it is given. For further details about the Trustees and the nomination process, see the prize website at www.heinleinprize.com.
The Heinlein Prize honors the memory of Robert A. Heinlein, one of the most popular science fiction writers of the 20th century. The Prize trust was established after his death in 1988 by his widow, Virginia Gerstenfeld Heinlein, whose estate will fund the prize.
In related news, the University of California at Santa Cruz has received a donation and grant from the estate of Heinleinís late widow, valued at $300,000, that includes the establishment of the position of a Heinlein Scholar on campus. The scholar for 2003-2004 is William H. Patterson Jr., founder of the Heinlein Society. For further details, see this UC Santa Cruz Currents online article.