Traveling Space Museum, Inc.
Board of Directors
• Ivor Dawson/Founder
• L.J. Fay/CFO
• Alvin Kusomoto
• Nancy Levine
• Bob Weinberg
Board of Advisors
• Victoria Conner
• Larry Evans
• Bob Hromadka
• Ed Moreno
• John Spencer
• Dr. Bettye Walker
• Hal Walker, Jr.
Forever the contrarian, TSM founder is the only one among hundreds of spectators with his back turned away from a rare nighttime launch of the space Shuttle Atlantis back in 1997. Never one to follow the crowd, Ivor followed his own path to space education. Later, he would develop his own approach to teaching it.
In 1997, Ivor Dawson was a full-time caregiver for his girl friend who had MS. Seventeen years as a caregiver earned him a free weeklong vacation anywhere in the USA courtesy of the Southern California Chapter of the National Multiple Sclerosis Society. Ivor chose Cape Canaveral. Inspired by that shuttle launch, Ivor returned home to Los Angeles and became a volunteer space education teacher. In 1998, he became director of an experimental space museum in L. A. that featured full-scale replicas of famous space vehicles. Before 1998 ended, Ivor launched the Traveling Space Museum (with a founding grant from Lockheed-Martin Corp.) to bring the space museum to the students.
Dawson gives space museum tour to astronaut pioneer, Gordon Copper.
Bringing a full-blown space themed circus to a school - complete with interactive simulators and a real jet aircraft - would become the hallmark of a Traveling Space Museum show. Ivors theatrical approach to space education owes more to Buffalo Bill than Buzz Aldrin - and for good reason. While in high school, Ivor worked for David O. Selznicks cousin, a Broadway talent agent named Gloria Safier. Under her tutelage, Ivor learned show business and he soon found success on both sides of the stage as a performer and a producer. Gloria Safiers many famous clients would serve as muses and mentors including the late great actress Geraldine Fitzgerald and writers Israel Horovitz and Robert Benton.
Encouraged by sitcom king Norman Lear to write comedy, Ivor sold his very first script to another television pioneer, David Susskind who persuaded him to move to Los Angeles in 1979 and develop story concepts.
With Nichelle Nichols and astronaut Mae Jemison in 1998. Jemison, the first African–American female in space is still the only person to fly in space and also appear in an episode of "Star Trek (The Next Generation)."
In 10 years, more than 200,000 students across the country have been inspired by the Traveling Space Museum but Ivor is inspired by his TSM Proteges. The TSM Protege Program provides unique learning experiences for deserving students who have expressed help in achieving specific scientific career goals.
Ivor can be reached at 323.903.5259 or Ivorstsm@aol.com