Endeavour in Los Angeles

Photograph of space shuttle Endeavour showing the three main engines looking upward at the rudder.

I finally photographed Space Shuttle Endeavour on Monday, June 19, 2023, at the California Science Center in Los Angeles, CA. Endeavour arrived in Los Angeles more than a decade ago, on September 21, 2012, and I really thought I’d be first in line to see the retired shuttle when the exhibit opened. Of course, I also thought I would take arrival day off and photograph the shuttle and carrier 747 landing at LAX. Instead, I went on the roof of my campus building and watched it fly by. Suffice to say, this visit has been a long time coming.

Space Shuttle Endeavour flying atop a NASA 747. A military jet is visible in the background.
Space Shuttle Endeavour flys atop a 747 as part of its delivery celebration on September 12, 2012. This photograph was taken at Cypress College in Orange County.

At the California Science Center, the orbiter is currently displayed in a horizontal position, as it has been since the exhibit opened in the Samuel Oschin Pavilion on October 30, 2012. However, you’ll only be able to see it this way through (roughly) November of this year. In the coming years, the shuttle will be mated with an external tank and boosters to complete the full Space Transportation System and it will be displayed in a new pavilion in the launch configuration.

Because of this coming change, I felt an urgency to see Endeavour now since the opportunity to photograph the current set up will disappear forever. I spent quite a bit of time photographing Enterprise when it was still at the Smithsonian Air and Space Museum’s Udder-Hazy annex and Atlantis at Kennedy Space Center. So, in planning the trip to Los Angeles, I knew Endeavour would be an exclusive focus, rather than taking in the rest of the museum. Though she lacks my passion for space and aviation, my mom joined me and even took the photo of me that’s at the bottom of this page (thankfully, this was shot on my camera since I haven’t seen her other images yet, which is how you know she was along more for the visit than the spacecraft).

Endeavour’s current display position provided some less-obstructed access than with Enterprise or Atlantis. Knowing that the display configuration will change, with Endeavour I focused on some of my favorite elements of the orbiter: the nose, the cockpit windows, the access hatch, the nameplate, the engines, and the wings — especially the delta shape and the leading edges.

One final note before moving on to the images themselves, preparation is an important part of any photographic outing. In addition to my experiences with Enterprise and Atlantis, and the landings I covered, I also reviewed several sites. These include the California Science Center’s Endeavour LA section, Alejandro Pérez’s blog, and Jonathan Ward’s Bringing Columbia Home site. The shuttles are museum pieces now only because of the loss of human life aboard Columbia and Challenger and it was important to me that the astronauts’ memories were present with me on this trip.

A graphic with the word "Endeavour" using a top view of the delta-shaped shuttle orbiter as the letter A. The white lettering is set against a black backdrop. Behind it is a photograph of a sunrise from space, which appears as a thin, blue arc with a trace of gold and a gold starburst in the middle.
Photograph of space shuttle Endeavour showing the full right side of the orbiter.
Photograph of space shuttle Endeavour showing a closeup of the right side of the orbiter's nose. Visible are the reaction control system jets.
Photograph of space shuttle Endeavour showing the three main engines looking upward at the rudder.
The view upward at Endeavour’s three main engines and it’s tail, with just a hint of the belly-side thermal protection system tiles. The U.S. flag is also visible on the wall at the back of the exhibit.
Photo shows a man in a NASA t-shirt standing in front of the shuttle orbiter Endeavour on display at the California Science Center.
Me and Endeavour (as photographed by my mom). I covered Endeavour’s first landing on May 16, 1992, as it landed at Edwards Air Force Base in California to end STS-49. Unfortunately, I don’t have any scanned images of that landing, so I’ll need to hunt through my physical archives.

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Valley Jr. Warriors

hockey players on the bench smiling for the camera

On the weekend of February 12-13, 2022, I was finally able to see my oldest play a meaningful game of hockey. As I mentioned in my previously most-recent gallery introduction, the D1 Capo Coyotes lost their Anaheim Ducks High School Hockey League playoff game on February 19, 2020. At the time, the team was a little more than a month away from participating in the USA Hockey National Championships.

I did not know then that the ADHSHL playoff loss would be my older son’s last high school game. He and I (and even my younger son) have gotten in some beer-league games in the time since the pandemic interrupted his playing career.

All that said, I never expected that it would be two years between meaningful games. For several months, he’s been telling me: “Dad, the boys want some pictures.”

Well boys, here are some pictures:

portrait-style image of an ice hockey player participating in a game.

2020 ADHSHL Championships

hockey players celebrate winning a championship game

The Anaheim Ducks High School Hockey League championship games were played on Saturday, February 22, 2020 (the 40th anniversary of the “Miracle on Ice” Olympics game, by the way), at Great Park Ice. I attended and photographed the D3 game in hopes that the Capistrano Coyotes would prevail after our D1 team was eliminated on Wednesday. It was not to be, as Servite took that contest, 2-0.

Shooting the D1 championship presented a bit of an emotional challenge. After winning back-to-back D2 championships and being elevated to D1 this season, Capo fell short of making the final. It was tough seeing my oldest on his knees after the game and the disappointment remains highly present.

That said, he was at a crossroads in his hockey pursuit when he joined the San Diego Jr. Gulls back in his Bantam years. The boys and the families were (and still are) amazing. They welcomed us warmly and they invited JP to stay over quite a bit to help ease the travel up and down the 5 Freeway. Four of those boys are members of the Pacific Ridge Firebirds. So I stayed to photograph their pursuit of a championship (we beat them last year in the D2 final). I was thrilled for their opportunity to celebrate a championship. The header image here shows two of his closest teammates from the Gulls.

FivePoint Arena is very photographer friendly, and I love shooting in there. The sight lines are as good as they get in minor hockey, so I feel like I get nice clean shots.

My images below, however, are not super clean. These are essentially dumped from the storage media so that everyone involved — players, families, the teams, and the league — can enjoy them as soon as possible. As always, I am happy to clean them up for anyone who wants an image to print.

Photographs can be viewed here:

photo of hockey players with the ADHSHL Schulman Cup
Kento (#58), Clayton (#12), Patrick (#31), and Ethan (#67) are teammates and friends from the Jr. Gulls seasons.

2020 ADHSHL All Star Game

The 2020 Anaheim Ducks High School Hockey League All Star Games were held on Thursday, February 6, 2020 in FivePoint Arena at Great Park Ice in Irvine. Photos by Marc S. Posner/Courtesy Capistrano Coyotes.

On Thursday night (February 6, 2020), I had the privilege of photographing the Anaheim Ducks High School Hockey League All Star Game at the Rinks Great Park Ice in Irvine. I shot both the Varsity and Senior games, but unfortunately missed the Junior Varsity contest, which had a start time before I was off of work.


The Ducks — who were involved in the event with with their game-day entertainment and production teams — and the ADHSHL provided an all-access opportunity, which meant shooting from the player bench and penalty box part of the time.

The huge take away from my vantage point is how much fun the players had participating in the game with current and former teammates playing on both their own and opposing teams. As you’ll note in the featured images, goal celebrations sometimes included members of both squads.

The photos in the gallery above are limited in size and I haven’t edited them yet (this kind of volume would take me a few days to edit and post, and I don’t want to delay sharing them any longer than it took to import, convert, and upload.

My usual offer to players and parents stands: let me know what photo(s) you want and I will get you a cleaned-up, printable version.

The 2020 Anaheim Ducks High School Hockey League All Star Games were held on Thursday, February 6, 2020 in FivePoint Arena at Great Park Ice in Irvine. Photos by Marc S. Posner/Courtesy Capistrano Coyotes.
The 2020 Anaheim Ducks High School Hockey League All Star Games were held on Thursday, February 6, 2020 in FivePoint Arena at Great Park Ice in Irvine. Photos by Marc S. Posner/Courtesy Capistrano Coyotes.

Use Revolutionary War Airports to Fly Out of Speaking Stumbles

President Trump caused quite the Twitter kerfuffle on Independence Day when he talked about Revolutionary War troops wresting control of the airports from the British. The flub apparently arose from a TelePrompTer malfunction caused by rain in the nation’s capitol.

Aside from the prominence of the error (and the comedic aspect, which trended on Twitter as #RevolutionaryWarAirportStories on the 4th of July, if you care to see more), it’s relatively small picture in terms of the impact. Still, no matter the cause nor your political perspective, there is a valuable public-speaking take away.

Remarks by President Trump on Independence Day, 2019. Read the full speech.

Most of us will never speak to an audience as large as the one assembled on the National Mall. We may, however, appear in a situation in which the stakes are even higher, at least on a personal level. Consider presentations you’ve made to civic groups, elected councils and boards, or even a hiring committee.

The outcome certainly holds potential to be life altering. Likewise, the possibility of getting lost in your words or tripped up by technology is a realistic one.

If it can happen to the President of the United States — with every resource of the federal government available — it most certainly can happen to me and you. It definitely has happened to me.

So, what to do?

The answer is in proper preparation. Specifically, you must know your brand story, know your presentation message, know your audience.

Know your brand story

Your brand story ties together those things that are fundamental, core to your (or your organization’s) being. The three things I articulate about my institution are: 1) we are invested in our students’ success; 2) we are a premier institution of higher education; and 3) as a California Community College, we are the best value. In any situation, I can default to these — and, since they’re core to our identity, I should be able to pivot there easily if I get lost in my presentation and need a guidepost to lean on. This works on a personal level as well. If you look at my online presences, I articulate that I am: 1) a recovering journalist; 2) a storyteller; and 3) spokesman at Cypress College. The point here is to know both yourself and your organization well enough that it’s second nature to articulate these core story elements.

Know your message

Your key message or messages are the specific takeaways you want your audience to have at any given presentation. Of course, any well-crafted presentation will tie back to your brand story as discussed above. However, speaking opportunities typically have specific sub-messages that must be communicated. For instance, the city council might want to hear about the status of construction projects on campus. Clearly, I’m going to articulate that we’re constructing new buildings because we’re invested in our students’ success and because we are premier. I’m going to articulate that new buildings help make us a great value. But, I will also need to articulate why we selected these projects, who they will serve, and what our remaining financial needs are.

Know your audience

Who is attending your presentation and what is their shared belief or purpose? While it goes without saying that this is critical information, it may be less obvious about to use the information to get back on track. One example is to bridge with something like this: “I’m mindful that we all share a passion for education and the opportunity it brings to students to change their lives. This common belief is what brought us together today.”

At this point you can drop in a quick anecdote related to one of your key take away points.

There are a number of student stories that I can tell by heart — and I can tell them either in depth or with brevity. If the projector bulb has died, I’m likely in a situation where I’ll have to conclude without getting my multimedia presentation back at all. This will necessitate a longer ad lib. If I’ve lost my place, sharing a short anecdote from memory should give me enough time to overcome my senior moment.

So, if I’m talking to a service group who shares an interest in helping those in need, I might share Selina’s story like this:

“This seems like the perfect time for me to tell you about Selina Jaimes Davila, who has experienced booth food and housing insecurity during her studies.” The amount of detail I share would depend on if I am changing course or simply getting back onto my original path.

A variant of this is telling the story of someone in the audience or simply pausing to acknowledge or thank them. Like this:

“While I’m thinking about how invaluable community support is to the success of our students, I really want to pause and thank Walter. I don’t know if everyone here knows that he’s an alumnus of the college, but I’m certain we’re all aware of his generosity. Walt, for your decades of service on our Foundation board: thank you!”

Exiting a story is a graceful time for a reset and, in most cases, this is when the audiences will be forgiving if you need to shuffle notecards or turn pages at that juncture of a presentation.

The next time you’re asked to present, try adding your ad lib anecdote into your preparation routine. It’s easy to tell these types of stories as an aside while PowerPoint restarts or even an escape route that provides a strong finish if you’re never quite able to recover your words.

Don’t Want to Thank People; Thank Them

My wife took a pretty bad spill the other day while walking the dog. Thankfully, her doctors, nurses, and surgeon were better than Humpty Dumpty’s and she’s on the mend. But this blog isn’t about her, her broken wrist, or life with a partner who’s out of commission. It’s about wanting to thank our neighbor who helped her out after she had fallen and couldn’t get up.

More specifically, it’s about actually thanking our neighbor.

Dan (that’s our neighbor) called the paramedics, called me, and — I’m pretty sure — was late for work as a result of tending to my fallen spouse. I suspect that presented with the same circumstances he’d do the same again. But, it’s nice to know that people still go out of their way to help others.

As I finished the dog’s walk that morning before leaving to meet my wife at the hospital, I passed Dan’s house and I began mentally composing a thank you card.

Karen and I want to thank you …”

I stopped this line of thought and scolded myself: “Don’t want to thank Dan; thank Dan.”

Wanting to thank Dan is the type of passive writing that weakens our ability to communicate with each other. I tend to do it most frequently when I’m rushing and on autopilot. Frankly, it happens more than I care to admit (and I’m certain more than I notice) in casual work correspondence.

The real problem is that it introduces an unintended air of insincerity to what is meant as genuine gratitude.

While sitting at at the hospital with my wife, I re-composed the thank you card to Dan.

Karen and I deeply appreciate your help and expertise this morning …

The change in language made my sentiments heartfelt and the expression of appreciation concrete. By using active language, I communicated to Dan precisely what I was thankful for:

  1. His assistance;
  2. His expertise; and
  3. The sacrifice he made by arriving to work later than intended.

Even if most readers can’t identify the difference between the passive card and the active one, they will experience the difference in the way they feel about the sincere expression you’ve shared with them.

To quote the great writer Maya Angelou:

“I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”

Photos: JCC Maccabi Hockey Tournament

I was privileged to serve as a photographer for the JCC Maccabi hockey tournament. The Orange County community hosted the annual JCC Maccabi Games and ArtFest  for 2018 in conjunction with Long Beach. More than 2,500 teen athletes and artists from around the globe participated.

The games bring the community together in competition, but just as much in community.

One of my favorite moments from the tournament came on Day 2. The teams from Greater Washington and Toronto Blue played to a 4-4 draw — and then they used the “handshake line” to hug. It was a sublime hockey game as DC got out to a 3-0 lead, but Toronto responded with four straight tallies, including two in the final 5-minutes. DC tied the game with a the extra attacker on in the final minute of play. However, the post-game tradition topped it all

Good stuff.

More photos are on the JCC Flickr page (note not all the photos there are mine, though most are).

I’ll be linking to an expanded set of photos as I select and edit in more detail than my immediate first pass through the images linked above.

Spin Zone: Join Me in JOUR 140 — Public Relations at Cypress College

I am scheduled to teach JOUR 140 — Public Relations at Cypress College this fall. A few more students will put us over the top, so now is a GREAT time to enroll.

Since it’s an evening class, it should be ideal for a small-business owner. We will conduct project-based assignments, so they’ll be directly applicable.

Here is some detail about the course and what we’ll cover:

JOUR 140 C – Public Relations
Cypress College – Fall 2018
CRN: 14174

Wednesday, 7-10:05 p.m.

Students will study and practice the techniques and responsibilities of industrial, governmental, and civic public relations, with special attention to publicity writing and public relations campaign development.

Date Lecture/In-Class
Week 1

Aug. 22, 2018


Brand Image — The big picture of Public Relations (the umbrella of integrated communication management)
Week 2

Aug. 29, 2018


Communication Management — Roles and Functions
Week 3

Sept. 5, 2018

Media: Thinking Like a Reporter (5Ws & the H; deadlines; news cycle; news outlets)
Week 4

Sept. 12, 2018

Public Opinion and Damage Control
Week 5

Sept. 19, 2018

History, Theory, Persuasion
Week 6

Sept. 26, 2018

Publics I: Stakeholders; Internal vs. External Communication; Employee Communication
Week 7

Oct. 3, 2018

Publics II: Community Relations and Public Affairs
Week 8

Oct. 10, 2018

Publics III: Consumers & Marketing
Week 9

Oct. 17, 2018

Week 10

Oct. 24, 2018

RACE: Research; Action Planning; Communication; Evaluation
Week 11

Oct. 31, 2018

Week 12

Nov. 7, 2018

Earned Media and Own Media

Week 13

Nov. 14, 2018


Social and New Media

Week 14

Nov. 21, 2018

Law and Ethics
Week 15

Nov. 28, 2018

Putting it All Together: Integrated Communications; Clients; Career Opportunities
Week 16

Dec. 5, 2018

Final exam


Dr. Simpson Lauded on Final Day as Cypress College President

Emotions were evident on Thursday as Dr. Bob Simpson completed a 30-year career serving students. A steady stream of visitors to the President’s Office offered their well wishes to Dr. Simpson, who spent a decade at Cypress College — and the past 5 years as president.

Published: @Cypress Online June 29, 2017.

Among the highlights was the presentation of a joint resolution of the California State Legislature. The resolution recognizes his service in higher education. It is signed by Senator Josh Newman, of the 29th Senatorial District, and Assemblymember Sharon Quirk-Silva, of the 65th Assembly District — two advocates for the college. The resolution was presented to Dr. Simpson on Thursday morning by Christopher Aguilara, of the Hon. Quirk-Silva’s office, and Kaelin Locker, of Hon. Newman’s office. Continue reading “Dr. Simpson Lauded on Final Day as Cypress College President”

Don’t Shoot or Stab or Bludgeon the Messenger

I will not die in this spot.

I’m sitting at my desk at a Southern California community college. It’s the best in the nation, at least from my biased perspective. But it could be any college. Or a church. Or a movie theater. Or a high school. Or an elementary school. Or a supermarket parking lot. It could be the university where I’m enrolled or a similar campus across the country.

Published: Dec 8, 2016 | Buy the Way… Insights on Integrated Marketing Communication From the Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism at the University of Southern California.

In the wake of deadly events at Ohio State and USC, which book-ended the week of November 28, 2016, I decided to edit and share this piece I wrote about a year earlier. It was authored primarily as my work observed a national moment of silence for the shooting victims at Umpqua Community College.

Continue reading “Don’t Shoot or Stab or Bludgeon the Messenger”