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Speakers Series. Rachel Lindbergh, Life Lessons from ”Tin Whiskers”.
Speakers Series. Rachel Lindbergh, Life Lessons from ”Tin Whiskers”.

Wed, Sep 28


Daniel Island Club

Speakers Series. Rachel Lindbergh, Life Lessons from ”Tin Whiskers”.

Time & Location

Sep 28, 2022, 7:00 PM – 8:00 PM

Daniel Island Club, 600 Island Park Dr, Charleston, SC 29492, USA

About the event

September 28 – (Daniel Island Club) Speakers Series. Rachel Lindbergh, Life Lessons from ”Tin Whiskers”. We have known Rachel since she was 17 years old when she spoke to our Rotary group regarding her high school science project. She and three teammates decided to investigate “tin whiskers” which pose a serious problem for electronics of all types. When used as a finish material in electronic components, tin can spontaneously grow conductive whiskers which form electrical paths that can adversely affect the operation of that electrical device. The team submitted their science project to a national competition and it won. As a result, their project was loaded onto a space shuttle and launched to the International Space Station. Unfortunately, the first rocket blew up. Undaunted the team tried again. The second rocket also blew up. Try, try again. Fortunately, the third time was a charm and the astronauts on board actually conducted their experiment in space. That high school science project earned Rachel a full scholarship to the University of Chicago. She is now a space policy analyst for the IDA Science and Technology Policy Institute in Washington, D.C. and gets to sit in on White House briefings regarding U.S. space policy. She recently did a TEDx talk in Boca Raton, Florida. This is a remarkable young lady whose entire career was changed as the result of a high school science project.

Required reading:

Hi all, It is time once again for the Daniel Island Community speakers series to get underway.  This series began in November 2012 so it is rapidly approaching its tenth anniversary.  We appreciate your continuing support.  As shown below, our speaker on the evening of September 28 will be Rachel Lindbergh who our Rotary Club has known since she spoke to us about her high school science project.  That  science project completely changed her life.  It got her a full scholarship to college.  And she is now working in Washington, D.C. advising the White House on all sorts of space-related projects.  Read on.  And, by all means, bring your kids who may be contemplating their own career path.  Rachel’s story might encourage them to think about a STEM career.  Anything is possible. We hope to see you on September 28. Steve Slifer

The Daniel Island Community Speaker’s Series will resume on Wednesday evening, September 28, from 7:00 to 8:00 p.m. in the ballroom at the Daniel Island Club. Our speaker will be Rachel Lindbergh who is a research associate for the Science and Technology Policy Institute which advises the White House about space policy.  That means Rachel participates in meetings on topics such as a manned mission to Mars, the future of space nuclear power and propulsion, and threats associated with hypersonic flight.  How cool is that? Rachel’s journey will be of interest to all of us, but if you have kids that are thinking about what they want to do with the rest of their life, by all means bring them.  Rachel’s presentation may convince them that a STEM career is within their reach if they choose to go down that road. Rachel spoke to our Rotary Club when she was in high school and was required to do a junior year science project.  She and her teammates decided to investigate “tin whiskers”.  These whiskers grow spontaneously on tin surfaces and have caused numerous electronic systems to fail both on earth and in space.  Incredibly, their science projected was selected to be loaded onto the space shuttle and transported to the International Space Station.  She and her excited teammates traveled to Florida to watch the launch.  But, alas, the rocket exploded shortly after takeoff.  They were given a second chance which suffered the same fate.  The third try was the so-called charm.  It worked and the astronauts on the space shuttle were finally able to carry out the students’ experiment. As it turns out her high school science project was a life changing event.  Rachel had never considered a STEM career.  She thought she was more of a humanities kind of girl.  But that exposure to science got her a full scholarship to the University of Chicago.  She is now a space policy analyst working in Washington, D.C. and advising the White House.  She bills herself as an ordinary kid who was given an extraordinary opportunity.  This young lady is anything but ordinary. This event will be held on Wednesday evening, September 28, at the Daniel Island Club. There will be a cash bar and passed hors oeuvres between 6:30 and 7:00 pm. The program will begin promptly at 7:00 pm and will conclude around 8:00 pm. Please click on the link above to register at This program, now in its tenth year, is sponsored jointly by The Rotary Club of Daniel Island, the Daniel Island Community Fund, the Daniel Island Business Association, and the Daniel Island Club. For more information or questions, please contact Steve Slifer at

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