Dennis A. Tito to Receive Prestigious Americanism Award From Boy Scouts of America

Exclusive Visual Presentation by Dennis Tito; Buzz Aldrin to Serve as Master of Ceremony

Santa Monica, California, UNITED STATES

LOS ANGELES, Feb. 20, 2002 (PRIMEZONE) -- The Western Los Angeles County Council of the Boy Scouts of America will honor Dennis A. Tito, founder and chief executive officer of Wilshire Associates and the first individual to personally pay to travel in space, with its coveted Americanism Award on February 21, 2002.

The Award, presented annually to individuals who personify the traditions of our country and the Boy Scouts of America, will be presented to Tito at a dinner reception at the St. Regis Hotel, Los Angeles, in recognition of his outstanding career in science, finance and philanthropy, as well as his courageous space voyage.

"Growing up in Queens with Italian immigrant parents who truly believed in the American dream, being a Boy Scout was a great motivator for me; the experience taught me that I could achieve anything if I set my mind to it. I am truly honored by this special recognition," reflected Tito.

John Creighton, Chairman of United Airlines and dinner organizing committee member said, "We salute Dennis Tito for his extraordinary bravery in becoming the world's first paying space traveler, his outstanding accomplishments as a pioneer in technology, and his life-long commitment to civic leadership. He is truly an inspiration to all, both young and old."

The Americanism Award has a long history of distinguished honorees including: former U.S. President Gerald R. Ford, comedian Bob Hope, former Governor of California Pete Wilson, and the late James "Jimmy" Doolittle, U.S. Air Force General and World War II fighter pilot.


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