Professionally, Jim Plaxco is a digital artist, photographer and owner of Artsnova. When not creating art, Jim is a software engineer, database administrator, data analyst, and web designer. He is a former member of the NSS Board of Directors.
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 and became an active member of the Chicago Space Frontier L5 and Chicago Society for Space Studies chapters of the National Space Society. As a consequence of Jim’s orchestrating 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 a Director of the Chicago Society for Space Studies. Jim is also the creator of the Chicago Society for Space Studies Speakers Bureau, the activities of which were instrumental in the chapter being awarded the 2006 NSS Chapter Excellence – Public Outreach Award.
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 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 Chair the NSS Web Oversight Committee and has taken 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.
Jim Plaxco also serves as a NASA JPL Solar System Ambassador, providing educational presentations to schools, museums, and various organizations and special interest groups. He is also the creator and webmaster of Astrodigital (www.astrodigital.org), an educational web site.
Jim’s other space related experiences include having served on the Harper College Center for Meteorite and Planetary Studies Board of Advisors; having been Program Director for the Henize Science Learning Center, 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.
Mr. Plaxco received a Bachelor’s Degree in Economics and a Master’s Degree in Computer Science from Northern Illinois University.