College rowing coach, team recognized
Florida Tech head coach Jim Granger received the Joy of Sculling's College Coaches award for the 2012 season at the organization's annual conference recently.
University of Virginia head coach Frank Biller presented the award to the Panthers' sixth-year coach in front of approximately 300 coaches.
Coach Biller, who has more than 20 years of rowing experience, won the award last season.
Under Coach Granger's guidance, FIT's men's varsity eight has won the Southern Intercollegiate Rowing Association Championship three times. When the Panthers hoisted the trophy in 2009, it marked the first time they had won the event in 17 years.
Their success has carried over to the prestigious Aberdeen Dad Vail Regatta. In the last three seasons, the varsity eight has raced to two second-place finishes and a third-place finish.
Last season, FIT came in second by a mere 34-hundredths of a second to defending champion University of Michigan.
The Panthers were invited to compete in the world- renowned Henley Royal Regatta for the first time since 1996, following the 2010 Dad Vail Regatta.
On the historic River Thames, they went up against the likes of Cambridge University and Yale University.
FIT will begin its spring schedule in March.
For more information, call (321) 674-8250.
General inducted into alumni society, writes book
Lt. Gen. Clarence McKnight, retired U.S. Army general, was inducted into the Distinguished Alumni Society at the U.S. Army War College in Carlisle, Penn., on Tuesday, Dec. 11.
The award rendered to graduates of the War College for their work following military service, was for his work in civilian education centering on the use of computer technology in the classroom.
General McKnight became a prominent leader in digitalization during his military service and carried that knowledge into education.
His military career spanning the Korean Conflict to Desert Storm is chronicled in his forthcoming book "From Pigeons to Tweets."
A graduate of the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, and the University of Michigan Graduate School of Engineering, Gen. McKnight is also a Distinguished Graduate of West Point who rose to command the Army's Signal Corps and introduced computer directed warfare during Desert Storm. He concluded his career as Director of Command, Control and Communications Systems for the Joint Chiefs of Staff in Washington D.C.
Gen. McKnight is a native of Memphis, Tenn., and currently resides in the Capital District.
His book, "From Pigeons to Tweets," will be published by the History Publishing Company on Jan. 14.
For more information, contact Don Bracken, History Publishing Company LLC, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Agency named in 'best place to work' survey
NASA was named the best place to work in the federal government, among large agencies in a survey recently released by the Partnership for Public Service, a nonprofit, non-partisan organization.
This ranking, which reflects NASA's highest results since the index was developed, makes clear that the agency's workforce is focused on carrying out the nation's new and ambitious space program.
The rankings are based on responses from nearly 700,000 federal workers. The Best Places to Work rankings are based on data from the Office of Personnel Management's annual Federal Employee Viewpoint Survey, conducted from April through June 2012 and additional survey data from nine agencies, plus the Intelligence Community.
This is the seventh edition of the Best Places to Work rankings since the first in 2003.
NASA's Stennis Space Center was ranked second in the sub-agency component category.
For more about NASA, visit http://www.nasa.gov.
Congressman appointed to space committee
Congressman Bill Posey (R-Rockledge) has been appointed to the House Science, Space and Technology Committee which has jurisdiction over NASA, space exploration, aerospace, energy research and development and marine research.
Congressman Posey's newly redrawn Congressional District 8 now includes the Kennedy Space Center and is home to the many of the nation's leading aerospace firms and research facilities.
As a young man, Bill Posey worked on the nation's Apollo Space Program until being laid-off with thousands of other space workers, following the successful Moon landing in 1969.
Having lived much of his childhood and all of his adult life in Brevard County, he has remained an active leader in space policy for many years, serving as a member of the Florida Space Authority Board of Supervisors, the Florida Commercial Space Finance Corporation and as a member of the Board of Directors for Space Florida.
In Congress, Posey has worked across the aisle to introduce legislation to strengthen America's space program. He was the lead sponsor of the American Space Access Act, a bipartisan bill to close the space gap between the Shuttle and Constellation program, the REAL Space Act, bipartisan legislation directing NASA to plan a return to the Moon, and the Race for Space Act, which passed the House last May.
Congressman Posey is also a prime co-sponsor of the Space Leadership Preservation Act, legislation to create a longer term for the NASA administrator to insulate the agency from political changes and to ensure that our nation's long-term space programs have the continuity that is needed to see them through to completion.
For more information, call (202) 225-3671 or visit www.posey.house.gov.
Fly in a vintage plane
The Valiant Air Command has announced that one of its most venerable warbirds is now flying in the local area; the C-47 "TiCo Belle." From the Normandy invasion to Cherbourg, to Arnhem, to Bastogne, to the Berlin Airlift and more, this aircraft was there, more than 65 years ago.
Now, you can experience all this history as a special and unique present for yourself, or someone you love.
Email email@example.com for more information, or to get on a reserve list to schedule a flight schedule.
When the Tico Belle flies, with you aboard - complete with Normandy invasion identification stripes - you will be able to look out and truly imagine what it must have been like on that fateful June 6, 1944, a day when the freedom of a world hung in the balance as she made her way in the pre-dawn darkness towards the beaches of Normandy; part of the largest aerial invasion armada the world has ever seen.
The Valiant Air Command Museum is located at the Space Coast Regional Airport at 6600 Tico Road, in Titusville.
For more information, visit www.vacwarbirds.org or call (321) 268-1941.
Order sea oats today
It is time again to pre-purchase sea oats for dune planting, through the annual sea oats sale, offered by Brevard County's Natural Resources Management Office and Keep Brevard Beautiful Inc.
Liner size sea oats are for sale in trays of 96 for $48, while supplies last.
Quantities may be limited this year, so order early. Sea oats must be ordered and paid for by Friday, Feb. 1, and will be available for pickup on Saturday, Feb. 9.
Sea oats are native to Brevard's coastal communities and stabilize sand quickly by developing an extensive root and rhizome system that holds onto sand and slows erosion. Sea oats also have the ability to build dunes, as the grassy foliage and tall seed plumes trap windblown sand, which builds up at the plant base and stimulates the plants to grow taller.
The dunes that are formed are an important feature of our coastal ecosystem, as they provide habitat for wildlife and protect upland property during wind and storm events.
For more information, call Paula Berntson at (321) 633-2016, Ext. 52431, email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit http://ww3.brevardcounty.us/natres/documents/2013_sea_oats_info_and_order_form.pdf.
Speech contests planned
Can your high school daughter or son talk for 4-6 minutes? Would they like the chance to earn more than $4,000 in cash?
The National Management Association is sponsoring the American Enterprise Speech Contest.
The first level of competition is February through March, and the second level is in April.
Any student in Brevard County in grades ninth-12th is eligible to participate.
The primary purpose of the contest is to promote and strengthen leadership skills in our leaders of tomorrow, by involving youth in research, writing and delivering a speech on that subject.
Also, the contest enhances the development of communication skills that are vital to those entering the workforce. The financial rewards are an additional boost to the winning students to achieving their dreams.
Four different chapter contests will be conducted in February through March. Students can only compete in one.
Winners of those competitions will complete at the council level in April.
The winner of that competition will win a trip to compete in the east area competition sometime in May or June.
The winner of the area contest will win a trip to compete in the national contest in September.
Those interested in competing must start eligibility process by Jan. 25.
Contest rules and information can be found at http://nma1.org/Speech_Contest/Speech_Contest.html.
For more information or to get applications to start eligibility, contact Violet Smith at email@example.com or call (321) 853-5550.
Lieutenant graduates from national academy
Palm Bay Police Lt. Steve Bland has successfully completed an intensive 10-week session of specialized training at the FBI National Academy in Quantico, Va.
Lt. Bland becomes the ninth member of the Palm Bay Police Department to graduate from the elite training course that is only offered to the world's top law enforcement officers by invitation only.
Lt. Bland was part of the 251st session of the academy.
As an FBI National Academy graduate, he enters into a select group made up of less than one percent of the nation's law enforcement officers. They were hand-picked by their departments and, along with about 250 other officers, completed the 10-week course, which began on Sept. 30, at the FBI training facility.
Lt. Bland is a 16-year veteran of the department. During his tenure, he has served in patrol, investigations, field training officer, youth services and special investigations.
He is currently assigned as a lieutenant supervising the Special Victims Unit, Youth Services, Major Case Unit, Special Investigations Unit, Crime Scene Unit and also serves as watch commander and SWAT commander.
Holiday presents and gift cards for food items, gas
Employees at the Brevard Public School's Educational Services Facilities completed its "Giving from the Heart" campaign.
Twenty-six families, with more than 60 children, were given holiday presents and food and gas gift cards.
More than $6,000 was raised through internal fundraisers, department ice-cream socials, bake sales, jewelry sales and a silent auction.
Some families also received toys and clothing.
The mission of the campaign is to make the holidays a little brighter for some who might be struggling to make ends meet.
For more information, contact Ginny Gleason at (321) 633-1000, Ext. 389.
Satellite arrives at space center
NASA's newest tracking and data relay satellite, known as TDRS-K, arrived recently at the agency's Kennedy Space Center in preparation for a Tuesday, Jan. 29 launch.
TDRS-K arrived aboard a U.S. Air Force C-17 from the Boeing Space and Intelligence Systems assembly facility in El Segundo, Calif.
For almost 30 years, the TDRS spacecraft have provided a reliable communications network for NASA, serving numerous national and international space missions.
The TDRS fleet is a space-based communication system used to provide tracking, telemetry, command and high bandwidth data return services. The satellites provide in-flight communications with spacecraft operating in low-Earth orbit. It has been 10 years since NASA's last TDRS launch.
TDRS-K will launch to geo-stationary orbit aboard an Atlas V rocket.
The spacecraft is the first of three next-generation satellites designed to ensure vital operational continuity for NASA by expanding the lifespan of the fleet
The launch of TDRS-L is scheduled for 2014 and TDRS-M in 2015.
NASA's Launch Services Program at Kennedy is responsible for launch management. United Launch Alliance provides the Atlas V rocket launch service.
To join the online conversation about TDRS on Twitter, follow the hashtag #TDRS.
To learn more about all the ways to connect and collaborate with NASA, visit http://www.nasa.gov/connect.
For more information about TDRS, visit http://tdrs.gsfc.nasa.gov/.
School teams receive awards
Palm Bay High School's PiraTech Robotics teams participated in the second annual Central Florida VEX Qualifier Robotics Competitions held in Leesburg on Dec. 15.
Team 508P comprised of Palm Bay High engineering students Nick Peters, Brian Guettler, Sandy Le and Troy St. Louis, won the top (highest honor) Excellence in Engineering Award, which was the only award at the event to qualify for the national (in Omaha, Neb.) and World Championships (in Anaheim Ca).
This prestigious award is for robotic design, autonomous control, engineering drawings, engineering notebook, competitiveness in qualification (second of 40 teams) and finals rounds, and how they presented themselves being judged by engineers in a formal interview and presentation.
Team 508Z members, Cody Jones, Bree Crisafulli and Jashal Patel, won the VEX Build award for a robust robotic design of their holonomic drive system, which ran virtually flawless and was a high scoring robot in the qualification matches.
They ranked sixth out of 40 teams and into the finals rounds.
The three Palm Bay robots competing ran in a total of approximately 30 two-minute rounds, with a 15-second autonomous, with all three robots performing in each match nearly perfectly with 10 motors on each robot, missing no matches.
The teams wish to send special thanks to its sponsors (Harris Corp, AT&T, The Able Trust, Northrop Grumman, Advanced Magnetic Labs, Health FIRST, Brevard Schools and Gov't Connections) and the mentors who help practice with students presentations, teach programming, design, help tweak their robots, drive to events and chaperone in hotels.
For more information, please contact Matt Conroy at (321) 952-5900 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Rescue mission receives funds
Brevard Rescue Mission, which provides transitional housing and support services for homeless women with children, recently received $3,500 in cash and supplies from the Suntree Ladies Golf Association.
Funding will be used to support program services for the families.
Brevard Rescue Mission is privately funded by donations from individuals, civic organizations, foundations, churches and area businesses. Donated funds provide housing, education, transportation, counseling, medical care, parent training, household budgeting, tutoring, job training, food and clothing and case-manager support services.
Call (321) 480-9100 or visit www.BrevardRescueMission.org for more information.
Kids club visit, sing for residents
On Sunday, Dec. 16, Knucklebones Creative Kids Club delighted senior residents of the West Melbourne Health and Rehabilitation Center with Christmas songs.
Looking like Christmas elves, club members also presented the residents with Christmas cards created by them especially for the event.
Knucklebones Creative Kids Club was designed to open a child's vision of his/her world artistically. Club members explore Brevard County by attending various venues, such as the Brevard Zoo, museums, parks, sporting events, nonprofit organizations and more.
In turn, the children create art (in an artist workshop) based on what they have experienced.
This artwork will is placed on the Knucklebones web site.
Knucklebone's mission is to offer its members the opportunity to explore, participate and create in activities, field trips and classes.
Pictures from these KCKC adventures can be seen at www.knucklebonescreativekidsclub.com. The site also features artwork created by club members, showcasing their unique talents.
Visit the website for additional information or plan to attend one of the weekly meet-and-greet sessions scheduled for the first and third Wednesday evenings of the month at 6 p.m. at McDonalds, located at the intersection of San Filippo and Malabar roads, in Palm Bay.
Seeing under the surface of the skin
MIMA Dermatology has announced that it is incorporating the groundbreaking MelaFind device into its practice, the first in Brevard County and northeast Florida.
MelaFind, developed by medical device company MELA Sciences, is a first-of-its-kind technology that is used during a skin exam to help dermatologists see under the skin's surface.
The device collects information from 2.5 millimeters deep into the skin painlessly and non-invasively using computer vision technology.
MelaFind's safety and effectiveness were proven in the largest clinical trial in melanoma detection ever conducted. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved MelaFind for use in the United States.
For more information on MelaFind, visit www.melafind.com, email anita.saluja@Mima.com or call (321) 757-5141.
Student survey in progress
All Brevard Public School students in grades 3-12 will be taking an anonymous computer-based survey during January to find out what the children think about Brevard Public Schools.
The survey questions focus on curriculum, instruction, bullying and school safety.
There will be no personally identifiable information in the survey, according to BPS.
If you have questions or wish to see a copy of the survey, contact the school.
The results of the survey will help the school to better serve all Brevard Public School students.
Quilters donate to cancer foundation
The local chapter of the Space Coast Moonlight Quilters Guild has donated more than 30 quilts to the cancer patients of Space Coast Cancer Center.
Sandy Sanchez, a member of the chapter having family affected by cancer, lead the group in its efforts to make the donation.
Ms. Sanchez, along with quilters Myra Ducharme, Dot Morgan and Karen Lee, donated a special "Daffodils at Work" quilt for the foundation.
The quilt will be displayed at the Titusville Cancer Center.
The Moonlight Quilters Guilt just celebrated its 20th anniversary as an organization.
The patients and staff are very appreciative of the quilts donated by the local chapter.
Call (321) 268-4200, Ext. 3500 or email email@example.com for more information.
Humane Society board announced
The Central Brevard Humane Society has announced its board of directors for 2013.
Sandi Trudeau of Sunny Beach Rentals will serve as president; Robert Smith of SGT Inc., will serve as vice president; Dianne George of Brevard Nature Alliance Inc., will serve as treasurer; and Jodi Levesque (engineering consultant) will serve as secretary.
Additional members of the 2013 CBHS Board of Directors include Michelle Earltinez, Brevard Community College's Veterinary Technology Program; Dennis Gollehon, Hartung Real Estate Inc.; Sheriff-elect Wayne Ivey, Brevard County Sheriff's Office; Karen Lee (community volunteer); Cindy Perrone, Perrone Properties; Jennifer Tharpe, NASA; and Justin Ward, Lockheed Martin.
For more information about the Central Brevard Humane Society, call (321) 636-3343 or visit www.crittersavers.com.
Accreditation team invites public comments
The Commission for Florida Law Enforcement Accreditation is conducting an assessment for re-accreditation of the Division of Alcoholic Beverages and Tobacco's Bureau of Law Enforcement.
The CFA assessment team will examine all aspects of the bureau's policies and procedures, management, operations and support services. The re-accreditation process is voluntary and occurs every three years.
The CFA assessment team is composed of law enforcement practitioners from other Florida law enforcement agencies.
The assessors will review written materials, interview agency members and visit offices and other facilities where standards compliance can be observed.
The division is required to comply with more than 190 accreditation standards in order to maintain accredited status.
A copy of the accreditation standards may be requested by contacting the division's accreditation manager, Jennifer Jacques, at (850) 717-1111.
As part of the on-site assessment, agency members and the general public are invited to offer comments to the assessment team.
Comments must be in writing and must address the agency's ability to comply with CFA standards.
Members of the public seeking more information regarding the CFA or wishing to offer written comments about the division's ability to meet the standards of accredidation, may contact the CFA at P.O. Box 1489, Tallahassee, FL, 32302, or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
New Year's resolutions for you
The Titusville YMCA is ready to partner with you to make positive changes that strengthen you and the North Brevard community.
Below are four resolutions determined to help you in 2013:
1. Set Specific Goals To Live Healthier - Start by stepping into the YMCA this January to meet with a wellness coach for "The Coach Approach." Participate in one of 65 weekly group exercise classes in the recently renovated Group Ex room. Join an Adult Sports League, such as tennis, racquetball, indoor soccer, volleyball or basketball. Test-drive the new treadmills, ellipticals, stair-steppers, resistance machines and spin bikes.
2. Volunteer - Volunteering provides opportunities to improve the community, meet new people and develop new relationships. At the Titusville YMCA, volunteers make a big difference in the community. The Y is currently seeking volunteers to coach youth sports or to serve on a volunteer committee. There are several unique committees to choose from based on your interests. For more information, visit the welcome desk staff.
3. Learn Something New - Step out of your comfort zone, have fun and grow by exploring personal interests. Are you interested in tennis, racquetball, Zumba, swimming, spinning or karate? These are just a few examples of beginner classes that the Titusville YMCA is providing in 2013. Try something new to build your spirit, mind and body. For class information and times, please visit with the welcome desk staff.
4. Spent more time with family and friends - Socializing in a healthy environment like the Y strengthens the well-being. It is always helpful to have a community of people you can reach out to during times of need. So, carve out time each day to connect with family and friends, and get your loved ones more involved with community organizations, such as your Titusville Y.
On behalf of the Titusville YMCA staff and board of directors, we wish you a safe, healthy, prosperous and blessed 2013.
- For Hometown News