My name is Dr. Ryan L. Kobrick and I have the ‘space bug’. As I have explored our planet, all of my efforts have been to catalyze space technology development, with a personal passion for human spaceflight. During the day, I am the Project Manager for Research and Development at Space Florida managing competitions, grants, and educational programs. During the night, I am the Chairman and President of Yuri’s Night, the World Space Party, helping connect people across the globe April 12th to celebrate and honor the past, present, and future of human spaceflight.
My path from a chronic academic (Bachelors, two Master’s, PhD focused on Bioastronautics and lunar dust, and Postdoc) into the commercial space industry has taken me to “Mars” in Utah four times, to the High Canadian Arctic for a four-month Mars simulation, to eight IAC events around the world, and allowed me to help fly payloads to the International Space Station. Being a Canadian-American dual citizen has opened opportunities in both of my countries and given me a unique perspective on international cooperation. As an engineer who believes that the universal language is mathematics, I know that our future will involve more ‘cross-ocean’ partnerships as we sail towards the stars for all of humanity out of necessity to evolve. Or as my SEDS friends would say, “Space or Die”.
I am proud to serve on the IAF Workforce Development/Young Professionals Program Committee (since 2010) and the IAF Space Education and Outreach Committee (inducted 2015), to help keep our successor ‘Next Gen’ members prepared. I have been in two Young Professionals Plenaries (2009 Moderator, 2010 Panelist) and had thirteen IAC papers with another on the way. Each experience has strengthened my international connections and taught me more about our diverse cultures, which is what brings us together.