Astronomical League Mountain Area Research Section (MARS) Region Election Ballot

Dear %%name%%, %%society%%,


On 3 February, 2015, a notice announcing the opening of a period of nominations for an election to fill the complete board of the Mountain Area Research Section (MARS) was sent to clubs in the MARS region and a notice was posted on the Astronomical League website, Only one reply was received during the two week nomination period so it was extended an additional week with the hope of filling the ballot. One additional person stepped forward during that week. The overall period for nominations was closed.

Vern Raben was nominated for the position of Chair of MARS and Dr. Rich Russel was nominated for the position of Regional Representative.

The ballot has been frozen and include only these two people. Additional write-ins etc will not to be recognized. This ballot is being be sent to each club president, each club representative, and to each of the current Members-At-Large, honorary members, and lifetime members in the MARS region.

The president of each club and one representative member (not necessarily the Club’s elected AL Coordinator) are to vote. Each individual will need to send their vote to Mitch Glaze

MAL votes will be combined and the winner of each position will count as one vote along-side those received from each club. For example, for 19 clubs a total of 38 club votes plus 1 combined MAL vote will constitute the total, against which the majority will be determined. Each MAL will need to send their vote to Mitch Glaze

Again all ballots must be sent to Mitch Glaze,  He will print and retain these ballots in the records of the Astronomical League for a period of 6 months


Please send an email to Mitch Glaze who is the National Office Manager for the Astronomical League, email:  . Emails are to be sent no later than midnight on March 14, 2016 MDT.

Simply state that you approve of Vern Raben for Chair and Rich Russel for Regional Representative.


Chair Vern Raben

I began observing at age 9 and built several telescopes while in grade school, high school, and in college. I’ve had a life-long interest in astronomy. Professionally I have BS degrees in electrical engineering and computer science and a MS degree in computer information systems. I have worked in a variety of engineering roles in civil, controls, instrumentation, electronics, and software engineering fields; I am now retired.

Service to local clubs, MARS region, and Astronomical League:

  • Longmont Astronomical Society Treasurer for 3 years, President for 8 years, and LAS member for 12 years
  • Webmaster and Board Member of Boulder Astronomy and Space Society for 2 years
  • Astronomical League webmaster for 8 years and web team member for 9 years
  • Received League’s Bob Wright League Service Award and President’s citation (2008)
  • MARS Regional Representative for 8 years
  • Webmaster and vendor chair for ALCon 2011 at Bryce Canyon, UT
  • Webmaster for AstroCon 2017 in Casper, WY
  • Given presentations on imaging techniques for Boulder Astronomy and Space Society, Cheyenne Astronomy Society, Longmont Astronomy Society, and Northern Colorado Astronomy Society.

Regional Representative Dr. Richard A. Russel

Dr. Russel is currently a Senior Business Development Engineer at Northrop Grumman Corporation in Colorado Springs, CO. Dr. Russel is the former Chief Architect for the Satellite Control Network Contract (SCNC). In this capacity he was charged with planning the future architecture of the Air Force Satellite Control Network (AFSCN) and extending the vision to the Integrated Satellite Control Network (ISCN). Dr. Russel has been the lead architect and integrator for the Space-Based Blue Force Tracking project for U.S Space Command, the Center for Y2K Strategic Stability, and CUBE-L Peterson. Dr. Russel also has led the SPAWAR Factory team in the deployment of the UHF Follow-On Satellite system. Dr. Russel has a Doctorate in Computer Science, an Engineers Degree in Aeronautics and Astronautics, a Masters in Astronautical Engineering, and a Bachelors in Electrical Engineering. He has also has received certification as a Navy Nuclear Engineer and is a retired Navy nuclear fast attack submariner and Navy Space Systems Engineer.

Volunteer Work:

  • Former Colorado Amateur Radio Emergency Service Regional Emergency Coordinator for: El Paso, Teller, Park, Lake and Chaffee Counties.
  • Member of the Colorado Springs Astronomical Society and Deep Space Exploration Society.
  • Awards: Received the Gold and Silver Radio Astronomy observing awards from the Astronomical League.


  • Astronomy at Pikes Peak Community College,
  • Graduate Space Systems Engineering at Webster University.
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