Orbital Inclinations is the official blog of MILA Solutions president Jim Banke and represents only his opinions and not those of any MILA Solutions clients, including NASA.Download podcasts of available archived episodes of Space Talk with Jim Banke, broadcast weekly from Florida's Space Coast on WMMB-AM radio.Look here for information about upcoming launches from Cape Canaveral, as well as links to some of the best online sources for upcoming launches worldwide.Here's a collection of space-related music, movies, models, books and other great stuff you can buy for the space cadet in your family.Look here for links to the websites of MILA Solutions friends, Space Talk sponsors and other interesting space-related websites.Information about, and examples of, some of the published work MILA Solutions has done or is working on for its clients.Information about, and examples of, some of the special projects MILA Solutions has done or is working on for its clients.
MILA Solutions, LLC, formed in 2007 to provide the aerospace community with media products, strategic communications and project management services.

MILA is pronounced MY-luh, and is an acronym for the Merritt Island Launch Annex, the earliest name for the area that eventually became the Kennedy Space Center. The area also gave its name to the MILA Spaceflight and Tracking Data Network Station, which was established in 1966 and supported launches from the Cape until it was closed in 2011 following the conclusion of the Space Shuttle Program. There's another reason why the company is named MILA Solutions, but you'll have to ask about the story.

MILA Solutions' current and past clients include NASA, the Space Foundation, WMMB-AM radio in Brevard County, Delaware North (operator of the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex), the Coalition for Space Exploration, Space Florida, United Space Alliance, The Astronauts Memorial Foundation and news publications including the National Space Society's Ad Astra magazine and Space.com. We've even helped a friend or two in building and managing their websites.

If you have a special project that could use a fresh, creative approach; or writing that needs to be done -- whether for a press release, a feature in your company publication, or for your website -- feel free to send us a note at jbanke@milasolutions.com so we can talk about it and get things done for you quickly and with quality.

Launch of a Saturn 1B from Kennedy Space Center.
Pictured here is the launch of an Apollo Saturn 1B from pad 39B at the Kennedy Space Center. It's one of the coolest looking rockets in space program history.

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Jim BankeJim Banke
President, MILA Solutions, LLC

Jim Banke is an award-winning, veteran communicator with more than 30 years of experience as an aerospace journalist, writer, producer, consultant, analyst and project manager based at Cape Canaveral, Fla. In 1987 he earned a B.S. in Aviation Business Administration from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University in Daytona Beach, Fla. In 2014 he earned an M.S. in Space Education, also from Embry-Riddle.

During his career he has covered hundreds of launches from Cape Canaveral and Kennedy Space Center, including dozens of Space Shuttle missions. Some of his career highlights include covering from the Jet Propulsion Lab the Voyager 2 encounter with Neptune, traveling twice to Moscow to cover the first American to launch into orbit on a Russian rocket, and traveling to South America to cover the launch of an Ariane 5.

Previous employers include Florida Today, Space.com, the Space Foundation and SAIC. As co-creator of Space Online in 1995, Banke was an early pioneer in online news reporting. While at the Space Foundation from 2004-2006, he helped manage the Coalition for Space Exploration, an industry team dedicated to winning support for space exploration. His expertise and experience with the space program was recognized in 2006 by Gov. Jeb Bush, who appointed him to the Governor’s Commission on the Future of Aeronautics and Space in Florida, which led to the creation of Space Florida, essentially the state's space agency.

Banke was honored by NASA in 2007 with a Distinguished Public Service Medal, the agency’s highest award for a non-government employee; and by the National Space Club Florida Committee in 2011 with the Harry Kolcum News and Communications Award. In 2014 he was inducted as a member of the Alumni Hall of Fame for Burnsville High School in Minnesota, where he was an active student leader. During 2019 his name was permanently added to a wall exhibit at the Kennedy Space Center Press Site marking his inclusion among "The Chroniclers," a hall of fame of sorts honoring the best aerospace writers and communicators who have worked at KSC.

As a journalist, Banke received a variety of writing honors by Florida Today and its parent company, Gannett. For their work on Space Online, the Internet's first news site dedicated to space news, he and his colleagues were honored with the 1996 Digital Edge award for best online newspaper from the Newspaper Association of America, as well as a 1997 Editor and Publisher's award. In 1988 he was part of a writing team that earned a prestigious Robert S. Ball Memorial Award from the Aviation and Space Writers Association. In 2003, as a writer/producer for space.com, he was honored with an Online News Association Award for Breaking News – Independent, for team coverage of the Space Shuttle Columbia tragedy. As a NASA contractor who is part of the Aeronautics Research Mission Directorate's strategic communications team -- a role he continues to serve in today working for FedWriters -- he has received the agency's Group Achievement Award five times.

Go Big Purple...The Minnesota-native is owner and president of MILA Solutions, LLC, providing strategic communications, media products and project management services to the aerospace industry. For some 25 years Banke provided live commentary for Cape Canaveral-based launches on WMMB-AM radio, and from June 2009 to April 2013 he hosted "Space Talk with Jim Banke," a weekly radio show about the space program. His contributions to the local community include serving as Secretary for the U.S. Air Force Space & Missile Museum Foundation and as a member of the board of directors of the National Space Club Florida Committee. Jim and his wife, Dawn, have been married since 1983, have three grown children, three granddaughters, one grandson, and remain loyal fans of the Minnesota Vikings.

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