Two New Directors Elected to Moonshot Museum Board

New members support a museum built in community by community, focused on career readiness for the 21st century space industry.

Pictured above: Dr. Samarjit Das (Left) and Dr. Rahmon Hart (Right)

November 18, 2021

Sam Moore, Executive Director
(412) 314-4111

Pittsburgh, PA – Moonshot Museum’s Board of Directors unanimously elected two new members during its November 10 board meeting: Dr. Samarjit Das of Bosch Research Pittsburgh and Dr. Rahmon Hart of Rivers Casino. “We are thrilled to welcome these innovative and community-committed leaders to the board of directors for Moonshot Museum,” said John Thornton, Moonshot Museum board chair and CEO of Astrobotic Technology, Inc. “Drs. Das and Hart bring a wealth of experience ranging from educational leadership and community STEM education to groundbreaking work in artificial intelligence and new space technologies. They are well-positioned to join our ongoing work to build an out-of-this-world space museum in Pittsburgh’s Northside.”

“Sam and Rahmon are exactly the right people to join our board at this important moment,” said Sam Moore, executive director of Moonshot Museum. “As we prepare to open Moonshot Museum in 2022, their commitment to innovative learning and cementing Pittsburgh’s position as a leader in the 21st century space industry promises an influx of energy and expertise that will serve our community-focused mission well.”

Dr. Samarjit Das is the Principal Scientist and Senior Research Manager at Bosch Research Pittsburgh. He leads a research group that concentrates on the interface between artificial intelligence (AI) and the Internet of Things (IoT). Dr. Das is also the project lead and Principal Investigator (PI) for SoundSee, Bosch’s first space mission, to the International Space Station (ISS) in collaboration with Astrobotic and NASA. He received undergraduate degree in Electronics and Communications Engineering in 2006 from the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Guwahati, India. He then did his PhD in Electrical Engineering at the Iowa State University, Ames, IA, USA and postdoc at the Robotics Institute, School of Computer Science, Carnegie Mellon University (CMU) in Pittsburgh. Dr. Das is the 2021 recipient of the Carnegie Science Award in innovation and he has been an invited panelist at the National Science Foundation (NSF) and National Institutes of Health (NIH).

Dr. Rahmon Hart, Sr., has been the Director of Community Relations at Rivers Casino since 2006. In this role, he is responsible for developing and cultivating relationships with community leaders, local business owners, corporate executives, and government officials. He is also responsible for implementing and overseeing diversity initiatives at Rivers Casino. Dr. Hart is a Pittsburgh native (Manchester) and a 1990 graduate of Perry Traditional Academy. He earned his Bachelor of Science in Kinesiology and a Master of Arts in College Administration—both at Slippery Rock University. After serving in a broad range of leadership roles at Slippery Rock University, Illinois State University, Case Western Reserve University, Carnegie Mellon University and Duquesne University, he earned his Doctorate in Educational Leadership at Duquesne University. Over the years he has coordinated a long list of community service initiatives throughout the City of Pittsburgh including but not limited to youth mentoring programs, Christmas toy drives, Thanksgiving food drives, and charitable fundraisers. Dr. Hart currently serves as a board member for the Iota Phi Foundation, The National Aviary, Ozanam Inc., the Northside Chamber of Commerce, and the August Wilson African American Cultural Center.

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About Moonshot Museum
Moonshot Museum will open as Pennsylvania’s first-ever space museum and the first museum in the world to focus on career and community readiness for the 21st century space industry. Via a unique partnership with Pittsburgh space robotics company Astrobotic Technology, Moonshot Museum will pull back the curtain on the contemporary space industry, offering the unparalleled opportunity to see real spacecraft be built and access space industry professionals – a first for both the museum and aerospace technology sectors. With a mission to inspire a diverse community to find their place in the future of space exploration, Moonshot Museum will combine immersive exhibitions with innovative Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Math (STEAM) programming to create a unique and engaging museum experience that inspires and equips young people with the tools they need to pursue careers in the space industry. Moonshot Museum is in the midst of a $2.7 million capital campaign to fund development and fabrication of its exhibitions and is currently scheduled to open in Summer 2022.