The prestigious ASPRS George E. Brown, Jr. Congressional Honor Award for 2002 was presented to Senator Trent Lott (R-Miss) on January 15, 2003. The award was given to Sen. Lott in recognition of his leadership, policy guidance, and legislative efforts contributing to significant advancements in the science, engineering, application, education and commerce of imaging and geospatial information. Sen. Lott has worked for many years to support the work of NASA, and specifically the John C. Stennis Space Center, a unique multi-agency center of geospatial science and applications in South Mississippi. The Stennis Center works to advance geospatial research, applications and commerce through the cooperation of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, Naval Research Lab, Naval Oceanographic Office, U.S. Geological Survey, Environmental Protection Agency, as well as many other federal and state agencies and private contractors. Sen. Lott has also supported several important and wide-ranging initiatives with national impact at the University of Mississippi and Mississippi State University in the area of remote sensing education.
Sen. Lott was chosen in April 2002 to receive the award but scheduling conflicts prevented the presentation until early January. Sen. Lott is only the second person to be so honored. The first was a posthumous award to Congressman George E. Brown, Jr. presented in 2000 in Washington DC.
ASPRS President-elect Donald Lauer noted in presenting the award, “Senator Lott has been very active and incredibly supportive of Mississippi-based remote sensing activities which have moved the remote sensing industry and the science ahead throughout this great Nation in a very favorable manner. And while Senator Lott has taken a slightly different approach from that pursued by Congressman Brown, for whom the award is named, the effects of his efforts are equally noteworthy. Senator Lott is highly commended for those efforts and clearly is an example for other legislators to follow in this regard.”
ASPRS created this award in honor of the late Congressman George E. Brown, Jr. in acknowledgement of his contributions to advance the benefits of imagery and geospatial information to society. Representative Brown was very supportive of this industry authoring key legislation affecting the industry, supporting relevant research and promoting development of the commercial remote sensing industry.
The newly established Brown award is presented periodically to recognize members of the U. S. Congress whose leadership and efforts have advanced the science, engineering, application, education and commerce of imaging and geospatial information. In addition to the plaque given to the recipient, the award consists of an opportunity for ASPRS to sponsor a geospatial sciences presentation to an elementary or secondary school or a university of the recipient’s choice in their district or state.