Space Policy Institute Director Scott Pace Awarded Order of the Rising Sun

GW Professor of Practice in International Affairs was recently honored by the Japanese government for helping to develop strong relationships between U.S. and Japan in the field of space.

People standing on stage
Space Policy Institute Director and Professor of Practice in International Affairs Scott Pace accepts his Order of the Rising Sun, Gold and Silver Star on July 8 at the residence of Japanese Ambassador Koji Tomita. (Courtesy of Embassy of Japan)
July 22, 2022

George Washington University’s Space Policy Institute Director and Professor of Practice in International Affairs Scott Pace was recently awarded the Order of the Rising Sun, Gold and Silver Star from the Japanese government for his contributions toward strengthening the relationship between Japan and the United States in the field of space.

The Japanese Ambassador Koji Tomita presented Pace with the honor at the ambassador’s residence on Friday, July 8, in Northwest Washington, D.C. Established in 1875 by Emperor Meiji, the Order of the Rising Sun is awarded to people who have rendered distinguished service to Japan in various fields.

“I was humbled to accept not just for myself, but for all those people in Japan and the United States who have worked so hard to strengthen space cooperation between our two countries,” Pace said.

Pace served as executive secretary of the National Space Council to former Vice President Mike Pence and as deputy assistant to the president from 2017 to 2020 under former President Donald Trump. He returned to the Elliott School in 2021. Pace has co-chaired the Japan-US Comprehensive Dialogue on Space on three occasions since 2017 and has promoted the importance of the U.S.-Japan relationship to a wide range of stakeholders throughout academia, industry and media.

Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency President Hiroshi Yamakawa wrote to Pace that he is especially thankful for his services at the National Space Council, for having shaped the policy and foundations for future Japan-U.S. space cooperation in the Artemis program, space and Earth science, space security and sustainability.

In addition to the Order of the Rising Sun, Gold and Silver Star award, Pace has been the recipient of the NASA Outstanding Leadership Medal in 2008, the U.S. Department of State’s Group Superior Honor Award, GPS Interagency Team, in 2005, and the NASA Group Achievement Award, Columbia Accident Rapid Reaction Team, in 2004.

He has been a member of the U.S. delegation to the World Radiocommunication Conferences in 1997, 2000, 2003 and 2007. He was also a member of the U.S. delegation to the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation Telecommunications Working Group, 1997-2000. He has served as a member of the U.S. delegation to the UN Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space in 2009, 2011-17, and most recently in 2022.

Pace was a member of the board of trustees, Universities Space Research Association, is a current member of the International Academy of Astronautics, an associate fellow of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics and a fellow of the American Astronautical Society.

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Dr. Pace is director of the GW Space Policy Institute and has had a long career in space policy.