Virgin Galactic’s Founder Executive Brings Decades of Global Leadership in Commercial and Human Spaceflight Experience
Florida Space Coast, October 24, 2023 – Space Perspective, the world’s first carbon-neutral spaceflight experience company, today announces Stephen Attenborough’s appointment as Strategic Advisor and European Lead. In this newly created part-time role, Stephen will use his unparalleled experience to help guide the company's commercial strategy and increase its visibility in European markets.
Stephen Attenborough’s name is synonymous with the opening of space to private individuals. At Sir Richard Branson’s personal invitation, Attenborough joined Virgin Galactic as Employee #1 in 2004 to lay the commercial foundations of the world’s first spaceline. He then went on to become the company’s Chief Customer Officer, responsible for initiating and guiding the customer journey to the transformative experience of spaceflight.
His extraordinary 18 years with the company, culminated in Branson’s history-making trip to space and saw Virgin Galactic become the first human spaceflight company to be taken public with its NYSE listing. He left Virgin Galactic in 2022, but remains a part of the Virgin family as a Trustee and Board member of Virgin Unite, the Branson family and Virgin Group’s charitable foundation.
“We are thrilled to welcome Stephen to Space Perspective and so excited that he will be part of our global leadership team,” said Jane Poynter and Taber MacCallum, Founders and Co-CEOs of Space Perspective. “We are focused on creating the most incredible experience for our Explorers, executing our test flights safely, and scaling commercial operations to serve markets around the world. Stephen’s experience, support, and partnership will be invaluable as we drive forward our mission to bring space to the masses.”
Attenborough commented, “I’ve known Jane and Taber for many years and have enormous respect for them as people and as space professionals. I have also always highly rated the Space Perspective vision as a fundamentally good idea, which can become a phenomenally successful business – a particularly challenging combination in the world of human spaceflight. I am excited to be returning to the space world and using my experience to help bring the Space Perspective dream to reality.”
In July, Space Perspective announced that the company had sold more than 1,600 tickets – surpassing the number of seats sold by any other space tourism company and representing $200M in sales. To put the significance of 1,600 Explorers in perspective, just over 600 individuals have ever flown to space, making Space Perspective's sales a groundbreaking achievement in expanding humanity's access to and experience of space.
Space Perspective’s mission is to take as many people as possible to space because looking down on our planet from that vantage point – the quintessential astronaut experience – will radically shift one’s perception of our world and our place within it. Astronauts often return from missions with a fire inside them to create positive change, and many get involved in environmental and societal causes. Often referred to as the overview effect, Poynter and Founder, Co-CEO and CTO, Taber MacCallum, and astronaut and Jeff Hoffman, former NASA astronaut, professor of aerospace engineering at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), coined the term Space Perspective for this new space age.
Media Contact: Josh Vlasto Josh@joshvlasto.com
About Space Perspective
Space Perspective, the world’s first carbon-neutral spaceflight experience company, is on a mission to make space travel accessible to more people than ever before. Its innovative Spaceship Neptune, which comprises a pressurized capsule propelled by a giant SpaceBalloon™, offers a safe and transformative six-hour journey to the edge of space.
With no rockets, weightlessness, heavy g-forces or training required, the experience is designed to be as gentle on Explorers as it is on the Earth. Those who fly with Space Perspective, which is being regulated by the FAA and follows guidelines established by NASA and the U.S. Coast Guard, enjoy unprecedented views of our planet through the largest windows ever flown to space, a world-class meal and cocktail service, Wi-Fi, and lavatory – all from the comforts of the world’s first Space Lounge.
Based on Florida’s Space Coast, Space Perspective was founded by human spaceflight veterans Jane Poynter and Taber MacCallum, who met as original crew members in Biosphere 2. They went on to launch Paragon Space Development Corporation, which develops tech for environmental control systems that, for example, can be found on the International Space Station (ISS). Space Perspective’s team more broadly has been instrumental in the development of every U.S. human spacecraft for the past 40 years.