Jim Plaxco is a digital artist, creative coder, public speaker, and web consultant. Prior to entering the field of digital art, Jim was an information technology professional and software engineer working for Fortune 100 companies, included AT&T and IBM. In March 2019 Jim became the National Space Society’s Director of Information Systems and in October 2019 became the NSS Data Protection Officer. He has since retired from those positions.
Jim has been a space activist since the mid-80’s when he became a member of the National Space Institute, the predecessor of the National Space Society. In 1988 he joined the Chicago Space Frontier L5 and Chicago Society for Space Studies chapters of the National Space Society. As a consequence of Jim’s orchestration of a speaking tour of Chicago by cosmonaut Georgi Grechko, the Chicago Society for Space Studies received the NSS Chapter Special Merit Award at the 1993 International Space Development Conference. Jim subsequently went on to serve as President of the Northern Illinois Space Advocacy and is currently President off the Chicago Society for Space Studies. He is also the creator of the Chicago Society for Space Studies Speakers Bureau which provides space-related educational presentations throughout the Chicago metropolitan area and across northeastern Illinois.
Jim Plaxco was first elected to the NSS Board of Directors as the Region 6 Director in 2002 and was shortly thereafter elected to serve as the National Space Society’s Vice President of Chapter Affairs (2002-2004). At that time Jim was placed in charge of a NSS Web Site Task Force that resulted in a rehosting and restructuring of the management of the NSS web site.
In 2006 Jim was asked to manage the NSS’ first ever space art contest and production of the resulting 2008 Space Settlement Calendar. The success of this project led to Jim being presented with the NSS Award of Excellence at the 2007 International Space Development Conference. Jim continued as a judge in the art contest the following year.
In September 2007 Jim was selected to serve as Chair of the NSS Web Oversight Committee and took on the task of redesigning the NSS web site. In September 2008, Jim was elected an At Larger Director in the NSS Board of Directors election. He went on to serve as webmaster for the 2010 International Space Development Conference.
Jim’s other current and past space-related experiences include:
- being a NASA JPL Solar System Ambassador
- serving as a NSS Space Ambassador
- having served on the Harper College Center for Meteorite and Planetary Studies Board of Advisors
- serving on the Enterprise in Space Board of Advisors
- having served as Program Director for the Henize Science Learning Center in Palatine IL
- having served variously as Editor, Webmaster, and Vice President for the Planetary Studies Foundation for which he received the 1995 PSF President’s Award, that organization’s top award
- having served as Contest Manager for the Enterprise in Space Orbiter Design Contest
- having served as an art judge in the 2007 and 2008 NASA Life and Work on the Moon art contests
- having served as an art judge in the 2011 and 2012 International Academy of Astronautics Humans In Space Youth Art Competition.
Mr. Plaxco received his Bachelor’s Degree in Economics and a Master’s Degree in Computer Science from Northern Illinois University.