Held in November 2022, the inauguration event of the ELEVATE Monte-Carlo Space Conference was dedicated to Peace and Unity. The space conference in the heart of the Principality of Monaco welcomed former NASA astronaut, Ron Garan addressing the evolution of his perspective on humanity.
Space and innovation are highly important nowadays, as the Monégasque government also entered into the Space Race with the creation of a Bureau of Space Affairs.
Opening the ELEVATE Monte-Carlo Space Conference, founder and Monaco resident, Zsolt Szemerszky addressed the historical developments of Monaco from its aviation heritage in the early 1900s to the space industry links of the present days.
Zsolt also highlighted that space travel and research are not just about technology and development, they also represent a humanitarian contribution to life on Earth.
Living on a space station, astronauts and cosmonauts of multiple nations are working hand in hand for a common goal. From the viewpoint of space, there are no borders, and ELEVATE conference aims to further cultivate and build upon this perspective.
The key speaker of the ELEVATE Space Conference, Colonel Ron Garan visited the Principality upon the initiation of Zsolt, to meet and greet the future generation and to talk about the “orbital perspective”, meaning that from space there are no borders, just one common origin of human beings.
Having enjoyed an illustrious career that has cemented Colonel Ron Garan’s place as one of the world’s most influential individuals, the iconic father of three is a decorated former NASA astronaut, fighter pilot and test pilot, humanitarian, and social entrepreneur.
Ron has spent 178 days in space and has traveled more than 71 million miles during 2,842 orbits of our planet. He flew on both the US space shuttle and the Russian Soyuz spacecraft, where he accomplished four spacewalks. Ron also spent eighteen days at the bottom of the ocean during a research mission held in the world’s only undersea research lab, Aquarius.
“Looking back at our planet from space fills us with the realization that each and every one of us is riding through the Universe together on this spaceship we call Earth and that we are all in this together.” – Ron Garan, former NASA astronaut
The Future Generation
The morning conference was dedicated to children and students of the Principality, with the main message that we can achieve more together in peace and unity. The conference was a full house with children ranging from 3 to 17 years old.
From the thrilling first launch, to what it was like for Ron to step out into space on his very first spacewalk, Ron’s story made the students feel like they are traveling with him on these magical journeys. While they were sitting in awe, the former astronaut described what it felt like when leaving Earth for the very first time or seeing the beauty of our planet from space, which we could never imagine before space travel and exploration existed.
After joining on a 71 million-mile journey from the heart of the Principality, local students enjoyed an exciting and insightful presentation about space and had the chance to ask the former NASA astronaut their most intriguing questions.
The ELEVATE Space Conference
In the afternoon, Ron Garan held a public conference, inspiring the participants with amazing stories of spaceflights and spacewalks from his journey beyond the edge of space, as well as the evolution of his perspective on humanity.
Ron’s philosophy is to zoom out to a greater perspective where we can see one planet as one borderless spaceship, called planet Earth. This can foster collaborative environments where teammates can achieve their true potential.
With this perspective, he encouraged participants, businesses and professionals to view and live their lives as if they would be crew mates with others on a spaceship, respecting differences and enhancing collaboration through diversity. He also reminded participants that every small step in our daily lives counts to create a more liveable and conscious planet.
As part of a select group of individuals who have been fortunate enough to see the world from space, Ron champions his “orbital perspective” message to improve life on earth.
Ron’s book, called “Orbital Perspective” is about his realisation that although we live in our countries and individual cities, each of us is deeply interconnected with everybody else.
Ron is celebrated not just for his research in space but also for his humanitarian contribution to life on Earth.
“My goal was to bring an authentic voice to the Principality of Monaco which can deliver a renewed sense of awe and wonder, someone who has experienced living in the space station. Many people and future space tourists want to represent this industry but learning from someone like Ron, who has spent 178 days in space, and has accomplished four spacewalks is a special opportunity.” – Zsolt Szemerszky, organiser.
The ELEVATE conference featured also a special letter written by the Chilean philosopher, Darío Salas Sommer. The former astronaut’s message was in harmony with the thoughts of the philosopher, known especially for his exploration of moral aspects of human life and personal development.
Thanks to Alexsey Antropov, a Monaco resident and student of the late philosopher, the private letter written by the Chilean philosopher – founder of the Latin American Foundation Simon Bolivar – was given to the organisers to be publicly read during the conference.
In this letter, written a year before his death, Darío Salas Sommer wrote:
“Human beings and nations urgently need to reach an understanding by communicating with each other in a genuine and harmonious manner. If not, their actions turn against them and as a species and as humanity we are inexorably bound to disappear.”
Alexsey is also a champion of the Antropov Foundation, which aims to foster and promote values steeped in ethical philosophy among the public.
The mission of the Antropov Foundation is to help individuals develop their potential for implementing positive changes in our society. This was also the key reason why the foundation became the key supporter of the ELEVATE Monte-Carlo Space Conference.
Ambassador to the Antropov Foundation, Aya Antropova highlighted that “philanthropy’s mission is to create a social environment that would encourage individuals to grow more humane in their thoughts, words, and actions. Helping people to get on their feet, find their place in life, fulfil themselves and develop their potential is a very important task to making philanthropy count in the modern world, which abounds in so many problems and injustices”.
ELEVATE VIP Gala Dinner
The conference, driven by awe and wonder with actionable takeaways, was followed by a spectacular two-Michelin star VIP dinner prepared by renowned SBM chef, Marcel Ravin.
The gala dinner was attended by Monaco dignitaries, socialites, and UHNW individuals, with a combined net worth of 27 billion euros, sharing the same message and philosophy on peace and unity.
Among the distinguished guests, one could find Cécile and Antoine de Massy, Bernard d’Alessandri, Alexey Antropov, Safia El Malqui, David Yakobashvili, Marina Melia, Vitaly Malkin, Victoria Silvstedt, Victoria Bonya, Régis Bergonzi amongst other influential guests.
“We live in a world where the possibilities are only limited by our imagination and our will to act. We do not have to accept the status quo on our planet. It is possible to eliminate the suffering and conflict in our world: Nothing is Impossible #TheKeyIsWe.” – Ron Garan, former NASA astronaut
This ELEVATE Monte-Carlo event was proudly supported by the Antropov Foundation, the Omère Longevity Institute, and the Lanteri Partners Group; and organised by Zsolt Szemerszky and Olga Barrale.
ELEVATE Monte-Carlo Space Conference 2023
October 17-19, 2023; Grimaldi Forum
ELEVATE Monte-Carlo is the leading European Space event focusing education, technology and the environmental and social impact of human space exploration.
The 3-day conference will inspire the participants with amazing stories of spaceflights and spacewalks from former Astronauts’ journey beyond the edge of space, as well as the evolution of their perspective on humanity; to zoom out to a greater perspective where we can see one planet as one borderless spaceship, called planet Earth. This can foster collaborative environments where teammates can achieve their true potential.
With this perspective, the ELEVATE Space Conference encourages participants, businesses and professionals to view and live their lives as if they would be crew mates with others on a spaceship, respecting differences and enhancing collaboration through diversity. Every small step in our daily lives counts to create a more liveable and conscious planet.
Further information: https://elevatemontecarlo.com/