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History

Our club was founded in 1979 by Dr. Yoji Kondo, a seventh degree black belt (or nanadan) in aikido (Nihon Aikido Kyokai), a sixth degree black belt (or rokudan) in judo. 

Dr. Kondo holds a Ph. D. in Astronomy and Astrophysics from the University of Pennsylvania. Formerly, head of the astrophysics laboratory at NASA Johnson Space Center during the Apollo and Sky lab missions and more recently director of the International Ultraviolet Explorer satellite observatory at Goddard Space Flight Center for 15 years, he is professor at the Catholic University of America and George Mason University, author of over 200 scientific papers, editor of 13 scientific volumes, past President of International Astronomical Union's Commission on Astronomy from Space and Division on Variable Stars, recipient of the NASA Medal for Exceptional Scientific Achievement, Isaac Asimov Memorial Award and the National Space Club Science Award, author/coauthor, under a pseudonym, of seven science fiction novels and editor of one science fiction anthology.

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