President’s Address



By:  Rob Carpenter | President & CEO

The vision and foresight required to plan for and engage in a long-term project is something that we as
financial advisors understand well. That’s one reason why we’re so excited about the impending flyby of Pluto by NASA’s New Horizons spacecraft.

After nine years of traveling through space, New Horizons is scheduled to fly by the Pluto system in mid-July. New Horizons was designed and built by the scientists and engineers at the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory (APL) in Laurel, MD, just a few minutes away from BWFA’s office. APL continues to maintain and operate the spacecraft as it draws nearer to the dwarf planet Pluto and its family of five moons.

We’re proud of the members of our community who helped bring this project to life through years of planning and hard work. The vision and dedication needed to carry on this rich tradition of exploration and discovery is what have made this country so great.

Here is information from an official NASA press release outlining media coverage and giving some background details of the flyby: 

Media will have the opportunity to cover the New Horizons’ mission, including the spacecraft’s closest approach to the dwarf planet on July 14, from APL where the mission operations center resides. NASA also will provide comprehensive NASA Television, NASA.gov, and social media coverage of the New Horizons mission as the spacecraft closes in on Pluto in the coming weeks. Details of coverage will be released as they become available.

Following a nine-year journey of more than 3 billion miles, New Horizons will pass approximately 7,800 miles (12,500 kilometers) above Pluto’s surface. The spacecraft will zip through the Pluto system at more than 30,000 mph (about 50,000 km/h) with the most powerful suite of science instruments ever sent to the outer solar system.

New Horizons is the first mission to the Kuiper Belt, a gigantic zone of icy bodies and mysterious small objects orbiting beyond Neptune. It marks the first direct exploration of the “third” zone of our solar system, beyond the inner rocky planets and outer gas giants

.APL designed, built, and operates the New Horizons spacecraft, and manages the mission for NASA’s Science Mission Directorate in Washington. The Southwest Research Institute in San Antonio leads the science team, payload operations, and encounter science planning. New Horizons is part of the New Frontiers Program managed by NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama.