Space for Kentucky
Space for Kentucky

Each Space for Kentucky has a theme.
The next several meetings will focus on spaceports. 

Building a Spaceport Part 1: 

Bringing space to your community


In PART 1, we discussed:

  • The business case for spaceports – Arturo Machuca, Houston Spaceport 

  • Spaceports as a focal point for education – Dr. David Alexander, Rice Space Institute from Rice University

  • Conducting an economic study – Scott McLaughlin, Spaceport America

  • Planning and building a spaceport – Francis Walker, Corgan – Associate Principal, Office Director — London

  • Preparing for Point-to-Point transportation needs – Oscar Garcia, InterFlight Global Corporation


The Space for Kentucky Roundtable is a series of meetings focused on growing the space industry. It is about networking, education, and social support for those who are reaching for the stars. 


Each speaker presents for 10-15 minutes.

Spaceport – PART 1

Houston Spaceport

We will begin the evening with a great example of how a spaceport can be a beacon for an area’s economy, and provide inspiration for its citizens. Arturo Machuca will share the spaceport’s business case and Dr. David Alexander will discuss its focal point of education.

Houston Spaceport is a part of the Ellington Field Airport in Houston.

The Houston Airport System spent $21 million on infrastructure at the spaceport site to help secure for Collins and Axiom. The $21 million investment resulted in $5 BILLION in contracts* adding 1,500-1,800+ jobs to the area.

(*an increase of $1 Billion since the July 2022 Space Marketing Podcast interview)

Houston Spaceport is the new home to Axiom Space, Intuitive Machines, and Collins Aerospace in a 120,000-sq ft complex that includes the city’s first “spaceflight incubator.”

Arturo Machuca
Houston Spaceport

Arturo Machuca 
Director of Ellington Airport and Houston Spaceport

Arturo Machuca is a tireless advocate of commercial space and a dedicated leader in the aerospace and aviation community. His efforts and leadership have been crucial to the rapid growth of the Houston Spaceport over the past ten years.

Under his leadership, the Houston Spaceport has become the fastest-growing commercial spaceport in the country. In doing so, it has become a major economic driver, injecting millions of dollars and hundreds of jobs into the regional economy. Tenants at the Spaceport are involved in virtually every aspect of commercial space, from planetary science to low-earth orbit and lunar activities.

Arturo is recognized in the industry as an innovator and thought leader. In August 2022, Governor Greg Abbott appointed Arturo Machuca to the Aerospace and Aviation Advisory Committee to assist in the State’s economic development efforts to recruit and retain aerospace and aviation jobs and investments in Texas.

Dr David Alexander
Rice Space Institute

Dr. David Alexander
Director of the Rice Space Institute

He is responsible for providing vision, direction, and leadership, managing the various institute programs, identifying and fostering research opportunities for our faculty, and interacting with government and the space industry. Serves on the Board of Directors of the Houston Spaceport Dev. Corp.

He currently serves on the advisory boards of SpaceCom, the Sasakawa International Center for Space Architecture, and on the editorial boards of Space Science Reviews and ROOM: The Space Journal. He has been named a GlobalScot by the Scottish government and was elected to the Board of Directors of the American Astronautical Society in 2018. He served as Chair of the inaugural Aerospace and Aviation Industry Committee of the Greater Houston Partnership until December 2022.

See his impressive full bio HERE. 

Scott McLaughlin
Spaceport America

Scott McLaughlin
Executive Director, Spaceport America

Scott A. McLaughlin is a highly experienced engineer and executive with a diverse background in both design and business. He has worked in both the private and government sectors and has traveled around the world installing, maintaining, and marketing specialized wind radar systems. His innovative designs support space launch, test ranges, aviation operations, weather service networks, atmospheric research, pollution studies, and shipboard-based wind measurements. Users include research and defense agencies such as NASA, NOAA, DOE, U.S. Army, U.S. Navy, U.S. Air Force, universities, as well as customers in Spain, Taiwan, India, UAE, Thailand, Kuwait, Mexico, Samoa, and Colombia.

See his impressive full bio HERE

Francis Walker
Corgan – Associate Principal, Office Director — London

As Director of the Aviation Studio in London, Francis leads the development of the international market, with a broad focus on business development, strategic planning, design, and project delivery. Among his many accomplishments are being awarded the NEOM International Airport Competition in Saudi Arabia, winning the Zurich Airport Expansion Competition, and collaborating on the Virgin Atlantic Growth Strategy for London Heathrow Airport. A strong advocate for sustainable design, he believes sustainability should be embedded in the design process, with architecture serving to challenge and inspire.

See his impressive full bio HERE



Oscar Garcia
Chairman & CEO InterFlight Global Corporation

Oscar Garcia is the founding Partner, Chairman and CEO of InterFlight Global Corporation. His company focuses on senior-level consultancy, board Advisory, and project design in the areas of strategy, enterprise development, finance, sales, and operations.

Oscar is a frequent commentator, presenter, panelist, chairman and consultant to mainstream audio visual media, press as well as aerospace-aeronautics specialized news reporters worldwide. He is often booked to speak in public events, and retained as a conference chairman, panelist and keynote speaker in multiple global aviation and aerospace events.

See Spaceport – Space Vehicles PART 2