3 September, 2017

One of the main missions of SGAC is to facilitate access to the world's major space conferences for young professionals and students. The Space Generation Leadership Award enables five outstanding SGAC members to attend the 16th Space Generation Congress and the 68th International Astronautical Congress in Adelaide, Australia.

Every year, SGAC receives an outstanding number of high quality applications. Congratulations to all selected awardees of the SGAC 2017 Space Generation Leadership Awards.


Carmen Victoria Felix Chaidez (Mexico)

Carmen is a Mexican space professional with a Master in Space Science from the International Space University (ISU) and bachelors in Electronics and Communications from ITESM. She has experience in telecommunications having worked for aT&T and Texas Instruments. She worked at NASA Ames during 2010 for the Small Satellite Division. She opened the opportunity for the first Mexican high school group to participate in the NASA Ames’ STEP program, and helped Mexican Universities to create internship opportunities at NASA Ames. Carmen played an important role during the consulting forums towards the creation of the Mexican Space Agency. In 2012 joined ISU as teaching associate for the Summer Session Program in Florida. During the last years she has worked with the International Association for the Advancement of Space Safety in the Netherlands. Since 2009, Carmen has been an active member of SGAC, holding positions such as NPoC for Mexico, member of the Space Safety and Sustainability (SSS) Project Group and the organizing team for SGC 2012, and Congress Manager for the SGC 2016. Carmen has participated in five Mars Analogue Missions in the past, and was part of the SGAC Poland Mars Analogue Simulation. Carmen is a mentor in the program “STEM Niñas Pueden” from the Mexican Education Secretary and the OECD, and has been acknowledged as one of the most influential women in Mexico by Forbes magazine this year.

“It is an honor to receive the Space Generation Leadership Award 2017. Being part of SGAC has helped me to grow both personally and professionally, and has impacted my career, and the career of so many young professionals, in a positive way. This award allows me to continue contributing with my ideas and my work to the space sector. I am thankful for this opportunity and I look forward to attend the Space Generation Congress and the International Astronautical Congress in Adelaide this year.”


Shreya Santra (India)

Shreya Santra, from India, is currently a graduate research scholar (MS) in Space Systems and Robotics at Skolkovo Institute of Science and Technology, Moscow. She pursued her Masters in Space Studies (MSS15) from International Space University, France, where she was introduced to the interdisciplinary aspect of space that enriched her with diverse ideas and inspired to follow her passion by collaborating with people from around the world. Her aim is to explore and innovate towards the development of future robotic applications for space. Shreya is an active member of the SGAC Web Team and Small Satellites Project Group, as well as involved in various space outreach activities.

“I am honored to receive the Space Generation Leadership Award 2017. I am extremely grateful to SGAC for recognizing my work and achievements. I hope to make the best of this amazing opportunity to strengthen my involvement with SGAC and establish myself as a true leader in the dynamic space sector by actively contributing during 16th Space Generation Congress (SGC) and the 68th International Astronautical Congress (IAC) in Adelaide, Australia.”


Maryanne Muriuki (Kenya)

Maryanne Muriuki is a young professional from Kenya with a background in Disaster Management and International Diplomacy. Within the East African region, she works for ILICIT Africa as the Disaster Management officer.

Currently, she is volunteering in various SGAC positions, including serving as the co-NPoC Kenya and as a Communications Coordinator for SGC 2017. She is also involved as the Deputy Event Manager for the first African Space Generation Workshop, AFSGW. Recently, she joined the STDM Project Group of SGAC as the Project co-Lead.

“It means a lot to me because it gives me a chance to deepen my knowledge and actualize my dreams about space. I hope it inspires other girls and young women in Africa to work towards their ambitions, and know that it is possible to make them happen.”


Marta Lebron Gaset (Spain)

Marta was born and raised in Barcelona. She went to Universitat Pompeu Fabra to study Translation and Interpreting. Later on, she got her Master’s in Forensic Linguistics at the same university. She is currently a participant of the ISU’s Space Studies Program taking place in Cork, Ireland.

Her passion for space got her to collaborate with SGAC, where she currently holds the position of Editing Team Coordinator. She is also the main organizer of SpaceUp Barcelona 2016 and usually helps with regional activities during World Space Week. She works at the Spanish aerospace company Zero 2 Infinity as Communications Manager.

"Winning the SGLA is an honour and a unique opportunity for me. I hope to get the most out of my attendance at SGC and IAC, and I am looking forward to continue collaborating with SGAC."


Olga Stelmakh (Ukraine)

Dr. Olga Stelmakh is the Director of Business Development and International Affairs at the International Institute of Space Commerce, and the Global Partnership Manager for the World Space Week Association. Olga has an extensive background in space matters, having worked in the space sector for over 14 years, including seven years of governmental and parliamentarian engagement.  Prior to her present role, she worked with McGill Institute of Air and Space Law, George Washington University’s Space Policy Institute, the Parliament of Ukraine, German Aerospace Center, Ukrainian Space Agency, and European Space Agency. Cosmopolitan lawyer with strong business background and fluency in 5 languages, she has worked both nationally and internationally, combining public service with academic work and legal practice.

Academically, the Paris-11 Institute of Space and Telecommunication Law and International Space University alumna, Olga holds a Doctorate in International Law specializing in Space Security, two LLM degrees and two Master degrees in Business.

In 2013, she was honoured with the IAF Emerging Space Leaders recognition award, and in 2015, 2016 and 2017 she was a judge of the regional rounds of the Manfred Lachs Moot Court Competition. She currently heads the Election Committee of the International Institute of Space Law.

"I am extremely honored and humbled to receive this recognition from the Space Generation Advisory Council. My deepest gratitude for the confidence reposed in me to those who encouraged to go further striving for new challenges and horizons, set the bar high and demanded more from me, taught to see an opportunity in every difficulty. You made me strong! Special thanks to those who inspired me by their example and motivated me to give my best! The Space Generation Leadership Award is more than an award, it is a huge responsibility to serve as a role model and motivator for the next generation, to be a mentor. I am looking forward to seeing you in Adelaide!"

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