This article on Turner Farm Observatory has just been posted on the Sky and Telescope website:

From: "Mercer, David M." <David.Mercer@fairfaxcounty.gov>
Subject: Great Decisions: July Update

Hi there Great Deciders!
I hope you’re all enjoying the July heat and humidity just as much as I’m not. But autumn’s not too far off and then the temperature will - forgive me - be falling.
We look set to end the year on several high notes. General James Clapper, the former Director of National Intelligence, will join us on September 13 for our discussion of “Cyber Conflict and Geopolitics”. On October 18 a representative from the Embassy of Mexico will provide insights into “The U.S. and Mexico: Partnership Tested”. And, on November 15, Harry Kopp, a former Foreign Service officer and author of three books on diplomacy, will give us a unique perspective on “The State of the State Department and Diplomacy”. So please mark your calendars accordingly. 
As you’ve doubtless noticed our format this year has been different in that we’ve invited experts on each of our topics to participate. While it takes no little effort to assemble our guest discussants, they have all generously contributed their time. I hope you’ll agree that this has served to elevate our discussion and enhance our understanding of the various subjects we address. I would welcome your thoughts and feedback on this.
Further, if you have any suggestions at all as to how we might improve our Great Decisions series, I would welcome those as well. We welcome your feedback.
Hoping to see you all on lucky Friday, September 13 at 2:00 for a scintillating session.
David Mercer
Librarian I
Reston Regional Library
FCPLEA Reston delegate


Come out and join your fellow NGA alumni/ae for our next happy hour, hosted by NGAA-East! Our happy hour will be held at McCormick & Schmick's, 11920 Democracy Drive at Reston Town Center. It will be a chance to catch up with your fellow alumni/ae and just have a good time.  The next Happy Hour will be announced later.

If you don't live close to Reston and would like to have a happy hour at another venue, let us know! You can either call or e-mail your thoughts to Joe Steel (703-483-1251) or jwsteel3@aol.com, or Ange Meoli (301-661-9378) or ngaaeastexec@aol.com.

Check out McCormick & Schmick's at their web site: http://www.mccormickandschmicks.com.

Hope to see you at our next get-together!


NGAA- East Wine-Tasting and Picnic Lunch

NGAA members and guests, and all former NGA and heritage employees, are invited to participate at various times at Hiddencroft Vineyards outside Lovettsville, VA.  This charming winery (www.hiddencroftvineyards.com) was founded in May 2008 by husband and wife, Clyde and Terry Housel.  The couple, who came from long careers with NGA and its predecessors, began planting their vineyard in 2001 and were grape-growers first.

The Housel’s decided from the beginning that they would focus on producing grapes, and then wines, of superior quality. Clyde, who is the winemaker and largely self-taught, is doing just that. Hiddencroft wines are approachable and readily drinkable. The red wines see plenty of barrel time…between 22 and 42 months. The whites are complex and show the characteristics of the terroir…fruit, flowers and spice.

The event usually starts at noon.  A picnic lunch, consisting of cold lunch meats, cheeses, bread/buns, prepared fruit and veggie trays, chips and dips, and water/soda, is usually served. The cost is  around $20 per person which includes the wine-tasting fee and picnic lunch. It is about a 50-minute drive from Tysons Corner via the toll road without traffic.


NGAA Oral History Program.

The first in this series of oral history interviews is with three people who worked closely with the renowned geodesist, Dr Irene Fischer.

Irene Fischer was a renowned AMS geodesist who redefined the ellipsoid (Fischer 1968) and had a significant role in developing today’s World Geodetic System. She died in 2009 at the age of 102, after an extraordinary life that included escaping from the Nazis in 1939. NGA’s East Campus Learning Center is named in her honor. Yet, when cited at the Library of Congress Symposium on Women in Mapping in March 2015, many important current practitioners and academicians attending had not heard of her. That led to an East Chapter decision to locate and interview several people who had worked with her. Listening to these interviews with THELMA ROBINSON, and ERICH RUTSCHEIDT and BERNIE CHOVITZ (Part One) (Part Two) will give you some insight into Irene Fischer, the scientist and the person. Then you may want to locate and read her book “Geodesy, What’s That? My Personal Involvement in the Age-old Quest for the Size and Shape of the Earth with Running Commentary of Life in a Government Research Office”, published in 2005.  This is a PHOTO of Bernie Chovitz, the principal interviewee, taken on the occasion of the Fall 2015 NGAA-E luncheon at NCE. Bernie, with his boss Dr O'Keefe, hired Dr. Fischer into AMS, collaborated in her initial research, and, following her retirement, assisted in getting her memoir published.  (Photo courtesy of NGA.)

For important information regarding the suspected hacking of Federal personnel records check out this message from the National Association of Retired Federal Employees: http://www.narfe.org/departments/home/articles.cfm?ID=3835