House Speaker Pelosi & Sen. Alexander Recognized for Leadership in U.S. Innovation and Competitiveness


House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senator Lamar Alexander
       Nancy Pelosi                                  Lamar Alexander

Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) and Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-TN) recently received the 2007 George E. Brown Jr. Science, Engineering and Technology Leadership Award for their leadership in ensuring that the United States meets global competitiveness challenges of the 21st century. 
 
Pelosi was chosen for the House Democratic Innovation Agenda, which she announced in late 2005. The agenda, which follows recommendations of the National Academy of Sciences’ report Rising above the Gathering Storm, proposes concrete measures for an educated and skilled U.S. work force and revitalized research at U.S. universities and national laboratories. Since announcing the agenda, Pelosi has championed its proposals, most notably after becoming Speaker of the 110th Congress, when science research was made a priority in the Fiscal Year 2007 joint funding resolution.

Alexander was chosen for tirelessly publicizing, with Sen. Jeff  Bingaman (D-NM), the report Rising Above the Gathering Storm, which has played an important role in bringing attention to the issues of competitiveness and innovation in the United States. Alexander has co-sponsored many pieces of legislation most notably the America COMPETES Act, S.761, which passed the Senate overwhelmingly on April 25. The Act would codify into law most of the recommendations of the Rising Above the Gathering Storm report.

The Science, Engineering and Technology Work Group (SETWG) present the Brown award annually to members of Congress who are effective advocates of federal science and technology programs. The award is named for the late Rep. George E. Brown Jr., a long-time member of Congress, who made outstanding contributions to federal support for science and technology.

Pelosi and Alexander were honored during a reception on Capitol Hill on May 1 in connection with the 12th Annual Congressional Visits Day (CVD)–the preeminent yearly event during which hundreds of scientists and engineers from around the country come to Washington for two days of briefings and visits to their members of Congress. It is sponsored by the SETWG, which comprises more than 40 companies and organizations representing a broad cross section of science and technology institutions in academia, the government and in private industry.

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