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A Tribute To Kara Knack

Rep. Adam B. Schiff

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Mr. Speaker, I rise today to honor Kara Knack, who will be retiring from the Friends of the Observatory, FOTO, Board this month after thirty-four years of dedicated service. Kara Knack's enthusiasm for the Griffith Observatory began long before she joined FOTO. She first visited the Observatory on a vacation in the 1950's, at which point she was so enthralled that when she moved to Southern California in the early 1960's, she quickly became a regular visitor to the Observatory. Her ardent interest in astronomy came to the attention of Griffith Observatory Director Dr. Ed Krupp, who encouraged her to become a more active member of FOTO by joining the Board of Directors. Upon joining the Board in 1978, Kara began writing and editing FOTO's Update newsletter, which she continued to do for the next 10 years. Since 1985 she has penned the FOTO Notes section in the Griffith Observer, the Observatory's magazine. Ms. Knack's passion for astronomy and dedication to the Observatory culminated in 2008, when over 2,200 of her celestially themed items were used for the Cosmic Connection timeline, now on display in the Griffith Observatory. For over two decades, Kara has collected celestial objects and jewelry and when the Observatory underwent renovation in 2006, she saw an opportunity to share her collection with the institution she devoted so much of her time to, and with the support of the Observatory staff, the Cosmic Connection was created. As a member of FOTO's board, Kara has served as the secretary for four terms, as vice president two terms, and as president for three terms. In addition she has also served on the Master Plan Committee, the Architectural Committee, the Selection Committee, the Renovation and Expansion Steering Committee, the Exhibit Planning Committee, the Planetarium Planning Committee, the Reopening Committee and the Volunteer Neighborhood Oversight Committee. For decades, Kara has demonstrated unparalleled enthusiasm not just for the Observatory, but for public education about astronomy. She has donated her time, her possessions, and her heart to the pursuit of astronomy, and her extraordinary generosity shall continue to be felt at the Griffith Observatory for years to come. I ask all Members of Congress to join me today in honoring Kara Knack for her exemplary service to the Griffith Observatory.