Board of Directors

RickTumlinsonRick N. Tumlinson,
Chair of the Board

Space News named Rick one of the 100 most influential people in the space field and is considered one of the people who helped create the current commercial space industry. He led the team that took over the Mir Space Station as the world’s first commercial space facility, signed up financier Dennis Tito to become the first citizen explorer to stay on the International Space Station and was a Founding Trustee of the X Prize. He co-founded the Space Frontier Foundation and founded the Texas Space Alliance, the EarthLight Institute and Orbital Outfitters – provider of commercial space suits to the new industry of suborbital space travel. He has testified on space policy issues twice for the US Senate, four times in the US House of Representatives and assisted NASA in the creation of its plan to return to the Moon and the formation of the Lunar Exploration Analysis Group. He is a regular contributor to the Huffington Post and Space News.

KirbyIkinKirby Ikin
Board Member

Kirby is a global leader in commercial space development with advanced negotiation, risk management, and analytical skills. At Asia Pacific Aerospace Consultants, he advises the aerospace industry and national governments on finance, insurance, market analysis, project management and launch services. This includes a feasibility study for an Australian spaceport, satellite valuation, and analysis of the regional applications for a new satellite-based service. Kirby earlier created a new aerospace division within a major insurer (GIO Space), managed the commercial operations of a project to create a breakthrough service to extend the profitable working lives of communications satellites (Orbital Recovery Ltd in the UK), and is Chairman of the Board of the National Space Society, one of the world’s leading space advocacy organizations.

Julian_2Julian Malnic
Board Member

Julian is a recognized leader in the global mining industry, having founded both Nautilus Minerals Inc (TSX:NUS, AIM:NUS) and Direct Nickel (an emerging nickel producer with a revolutionary and dramatically lower cost new extraction technology). Mr. Malnic is also the Founder and Chairman of the Sydney Mining Club, the managing director of Fluid Minerals Limited, and Director of Public Relations for the Constitution Education Fund of Australia. He is a well-known voice in mining and policy circles in Australia.

DavidGumpDavid Gump
Vice Chair and Marketing Director

David leads interactions with space agencies, corporate marketers and media companies. He led the company’s win of two NASA contracts to provide the agency with technical and policy advice on asteroid exploration and harvesting. Previously David was president of Astrobotic Technology for the development of lunar resources, winning $12 million in NASA technology development contracts and putting a SpaceX Falcon 9 launch vehicle under contract for a Moon mission. While president of Transformational Space Corp., NASA selected t/Space to provide it with policy advice and technical development for its return to the Moon. t/Space was the only corporation given full funding in the second phase of that program. In addition, David produced the first TV commercial filmed on the International Space Station, after selling the concept and negotiating the access rights. He also has created space entertainment software and the distribution channels that saw it sold by Walmart, Best Buy, and the Smithsonian Air & Space Museum.


MarkSonterMark Sonter
Board Member

Mark directs the Deep Space group developing the technologies and operational concepts needed to harvest commercial quantities of asteroid resources. He is an independent scientific consultant in the Australian mining and metallurgical industries, with specific major expertise in radiation management in uranium, mineral sands, and (over the last 5 years) rare earths exploration, mining, and processing. His background in asteroid exploitation began as a visiting scholar at the University of Arizona Lunar and Planetary Laboratory where he examined the technical and economic feasibility of mining near-Earth asteroids. Then the Foundation for International Non-Governmental Development of Space (FINDS) funded Mark to extend this research, and to prepare and test cometary crust simulant material. Resulting papers were accepted and presented at several scientific forums.


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