Vice President Mike Pence hosts the first meeting of the National Space Council Thursday morning kicking off the Trump administration’s bid to “make America’s space program great again.”
“At President Trump’s direction, the kick-off meeting of the National Space Council will bring together all aspects and sectors of the national space enterprise for the first time in a quarter-century,” said Vice President Pence. “This meeting will provide an opportunity for the Administration to lay out its vision for space exploration. As President Trump said, ‘We’re a nation of pioneers, and the next great American frontier is space.’ ”
“This high-level group advises the president and comprises the leaders of government agencies with a stake in space, including the NASA administrator, the Secretaries of State, Commerce, Defense, and others, and will be chaired by Vice President Mike Pence,” acting NASA Administrator Robert Lightfoot said in a statement. “It will help ensure that all aspects of the nation’s space power — national security, commerce, international relations, exploration, and science, are coordinated and aligned to best serve the American people.”
President Donald Trump signed an executive order reestablishing the National Space Council on June 30, 2017. Currently confirmed council members of the first meeting include: National Space Council Chairman, Vice President Mike Pence; Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson; Secretary of Defense, James Mattis; Secretary of Commerce, Wilbur Ross; Secretary of Transportation, Elaine Chao; Acting Secretary of Homeland Security, Elaine Duke; Office of Management and Budget Director, Mick Mulvaney; National Security Advisor, H.R. McMaster; Director of National Intelligence, Daniel Coats; Acting NASA Administrator, Robert Lightfoot; Deputy Chief Technology Officer of the United States, Michael Kratsios; and the Vice Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, General Paul J. Selva.
Similar councils were formed in 1958 running until 1973 and again in 1989 going until 1993 when Bill Clinton disbanded it upon taking office.