Space Exploration Experience

Voyager SpacecraftJackie spent 20 years working for NASA at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California. He started in 1977 on the Voyager Project, two amazing space probes that explored much of the Solar System. Voyager 1 explored the systems of Jupiter and Saturn while Voyager 2's trajectory allowed it to vist Uranus and Neptune after flying by Jupiter and Saturn.

After Voyager 2 Saturn Encounter, Jackie began work on the Galileo Project, a Voyager-like spacecraft that was sent back to Jupiter to orbit and collect detailed data. After Galileo began its orbital
Saturnoperations, Jackie worked on the Space Station Program, the Mars Observer Mission, and then spent a 5 years on the Earth-orbiting satellite mission known as the Ocean Topography Experiment (TOPEX). On TOPEX he led the Mission Planning and Sequencing Team.

Hubble CollageAfter TOPEX, Jackie decided that education rather than engineering was his passion. He left JPL to focus on his doctoral program, but soon was was invited to return as the Educational Outreach Manager for the Pluto Express PreProject, the Europa Orbiter, and Solar Probe missions. Together they were called the Ice and Fire Preprojects.  These were the study missions that developed the plans that later became real and resulted in the New Horizons mission to Pluto, which launced on January 19, 2006. It will flyby Pluto in January of 2015. The Europa Orbiter and Solar Probe missions are still under development. As Education Outreach Manager, Jackie and Richard Shope trained thousands of educators in progressive teaching techniques.

Planetarium Experience

Griffith ObservatoryJackie's love of the planetarium began when he visited Griffith Observatory in Los Angeles on a high school science club field trip. Years later, while studying astronomy at the University of Southern California, he got a part-time job as a tour guide there and he later became the tour guide supervisor. 
Griffith Observatory
Jackie has found an excuse to get his classes into a planetarium whenever he can and as a result, has operated a number of different kinds of planetaria. Beverly Hills High

Beverly Hills High Planetarium

He has used the planetaria at Santa Monica College and Beverly Hills High School, both in California. PSCUpon arrival in his new home in Seattle, he got permission to use the small planetarium at the Pacific Science Center (pictured on the right). The Beverly Hills High planetarium was built thanks to the donations of actor Jimmy Stewart and majestically rises from the floor when needed. The Santa Monica College Planetarium was run by the late Jon Hodge, a wonderful man and a former colleage of Jackie when he worked at Griffith.


University of Washington PlanetariumUW Planetarium

In 2011, Jackie began volunteering as a planetarium lecturer for the University of Washington Department of Astronomy. They give free shows to any school group or public organization that request one. A couple times a month, Jackie gives shows to groups from age 3 on up. He considers those shows to be very important, rewarding experiences. About the planetarium experience, Dr. Jackie says,

"I consider the planetarium experience very special and vital, both to the general public and those immersed in the practice of research in the sciences. Being able to replicate the human experience of the night time sky and to use that as a backdrop to connect modern science with people and cultures throughout time is priceless. I have seen countless people of all ages leave my planetarium experiences touched for all time."

The 30-foot dome makes for an ideal teaching space and hundreds of students of all ages have had the chance to have a real storytelling experience under the simulated night time sky, the way stories have been shared for thousands of years.


World Wide TelescopeThe UW planetarium has been equiped with the Microsoft Research program World Wide Telescope. Using digital projection, the audience can be taken anywhere in the known universe using real data and real photos. It is an amazing tool that lets audiences go anywhere in the known universe! And anyone can use the WWT on their desktop computer for free!

"You are a terrific speaker and I could not have enjoyed the class more. I am thoroughly excited about the possibilities with my new found knowledge; it [already made] my studies so much easier last night. "MICROSOFT HOME