NASA’s Groundbreaking Prize Fuels Diversity and Inclusivity in Space Tech Revolution






TechWizard Feature: NASA’s Prize Boosts Space Tech Diversity, Inclusivity Champions

TechWizard Feature: NASA’s Prize Boosts Space Tech Diversity, Inclusivity Champions

NASA has selected the first winners of the agency’s Space Tech Catalyst prize to expand engagement with underrepresented and diverse individuals in the space technology sector. The winners will receive $25,000 each to create more inclusive space technology ecosystems.

“As NASA continues to explore the unknown and make the impossible possible, we are committed to engaging talents from all backgrounds to advance exploration,” said Shahra Lambert, NASA senior advisor for engagement. “By providing funding to this space technology community, NASA is ensuring the Artemis Generation will have the necessary tools to expand humanity’s reach.”

Winners of the Space Tech Catalyst Prize:

  • Caitlin O’Brien, SciAccess, Inc.
  • Zainab Abbas, SciTech@U
  • Bahiy Watson, The 1881 Institute
  • Amber Imai-Hong, Mahina Aerospace
  • Marta Miletic, San Diego State University
  • Felecia Brown, NorthStar of GIS
  • Diego Sandoval, Cyncrocity
  • Arif Rahman, Hawaii Pacific University
  • Sierra Brown
  • Denise Thorsen, University of Alaska Fairbanks
  • Joshua Neubert, Institute of Competition Sciences
  • Madison Feehan, Space Copy, Inc.
  • Johnie Turnage, Black Tech Saturdays
  • Athip Thirupathi Raj, University of Arizona SpaceTREx Lab
  • Janeya Griffin, Equity Space Alliance, Inc.
  • Annika Rollock, Aurelia Institute
  • M. von Nkosi, Institute for Local Innovations, Inc.
  • Joseph Grant, New Generation Solutions SSTS
  • Sambit Bhattacharya, Fayetteville State University
  • Dalia David, Honest Eating, LLC

Each winner was selected for their ability to engage and develop underrepresented groups in space technology development, broaden NASA’s outreach efforts to diverse sources of developers, and build a community of emerging innovators equipped to compete for the agency’s technology development opportunities.

“We are proud to recognize and celebrate the accomplishments of these exceptional individuals and organizations leading the way in building an inclusive community in space technology for the benefit of humanity,” said Denna Lambert, inclusive innovation team lead, Space Technology Mission Directorate (STMD) at NASA Headquarters in Washington.

To increase collaboration between NASA and its community partners, each winner will attend an in-person event at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland. Representatives from NASA and the winning organizations will participate in community-building activities to emphasize knowledge sharing and expand the agency’s reach into diverse innovator communities.

The Space Tech Catalyst Prize, funded by STMD, is part of a commitment to expand NASA’s network of competitive proposers and enhance engagement approaches.