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Contest Judging Panel


David Blake
David Blake received his PhD in Mineralogy from the University of Michigan in 1984. As a NASA scientist he studied the biogenic elements from their origin in stars to their incorporation into prebiotic compounds and early life. He received NASA’s Exceptional Scientific Achievement medal in 1998 for his work on astrophysical ices and the origin of biogenic compounds. His miniaturized mineralogical instrument received an R&D 100 Award from Research and Development Magazine in 1999.

Patents submitted by Blake were awarded the Govt. Commercial Invention of the year in 2010 and the Govt. Invention of the Year in 2013. He is the Principal Investigator of the CheMin XRD/XRF instrument on the Mars Science Laboratory rover Curiosity. Blake received NASA’s Outstanding Leadership Medal in 2013 for his 22-year development of the CheMin instrument which resulted in the first quantitative mineralogy of the Mars surface and discovery of the first habitable environment on Mars.

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Paul Andres
Applying his problem solving skills of an Engineering and Business education and extensive work experience in Management, Engineering, Sales, Marketing, Finance, and Manufacturing Paul Andres has a proven record of successful redefining, redirecting, and growing organizations. A degreed Engineer with extensive hands-on working experience in design, fabrication, maintenance, troubleshooting, and repair and a top school MBA who enjoys solving problems. Extensive International experience.

Founder and CEO of 1 World Medicine Inc, an Integrative Medicine Clinic in Las Vegas which is providing primary care and urgent care services to insured and uninsured (cash) patients. He is Founder and Managing Member of World Wellness Group LLC, engaged in medical center property development and management, creating a Wellness Center combining allopathic (western), Eastern (Chinese and Ayurvedic), and Holistic medicines.

Paul is President of Andres Investments (1995) and Linebrook Investments (1999), both Venture Capital Real Estate investment companies and Founder of the Andres Institute of Art (1997), a 501.c3 nonprofit educational institution. Also, he is Manager / Member of 5 real estate LLCs in New Hampshire, Nevada, and Hawai’i.

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Trent M. Smith
Mr. Trent Smith currently works for the ISS Program at Kennedy Space Center with the goal of maximizing ISS science in the orbiting laboratory. He transitioned from the Commercial Crew Program where he was working to get NASA astronauts back into space on U.S. led space systems. Prior to that he was a NASA Detailee and Technical Advisor to the U.S. Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation. Previous to his experience on Capitol Hill, Mr. Smith earned valuable operations and project management experience with Ares I-X and Space Shuttle retirement activities. He was the Vehicle Processing Engineer for Ares I-X providing technical and operational leadership for the Launch Vehicle Processing Directorate. After that he was named the Transition Project Lead for key KSC facilities for the Transition and Retirement of the Space Shuttle Program.

He and his team decommissioned and retired MLP1 as well as safed and transferred Pad B to the Constellation Program while still safely launching Shuttles from Pad A. Mr. Smith started working for NASA as a polymer chemist in the Polymer Science and Technology Laboratory. He received his B.Sc. and M.Sc. in chemistry from Florida Institute of Technology. Mr. Smith has extensive experience in thermal insulation materials specifically with polymer foam materials as well as an extensive knowledge in organic synthesis of polymer materials and nanocomposites. He also has extensive knowledge of fire and polymers, inherently conductive polymers and electrostatic dissipative materials, radiation shielding materials, icephobic coatings and materials for cryogenic applications. Mr. Smith has supported several Space Shuttle materials investigations. Most notably the PAL ramp foam liberation of STS-114 and the ECO sensor failure for STS-122.

Specialties: Play-doh processing, construction with rok blocks, legos, wedgits, monster truck races, trains, dinosaurs, and robots — my 4 and 7 year old boys keep me well trained…

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