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(Photo courtesy: Office of Rep. Mike Levin)

Oceanside Resident First Recipient of Representative Levin‘s New ‘Constituent of the Month’ Program

 Program to Highlight Outstanding North County San Diego and South Orange County Residents

First Constituent of the Month, Shelby Jacobs, is a Hidden Figure of NASA Apollo and Space Shuttle Programs

Oceanside, CA – U.S. Representative Mike Levin (D-CA) has launched a “Constituent of the Month” program to highlight outstanding North County San Diego and south Orange County residents who have gone above and beyond to help their neighbors, give back to their community, and make the country stronger.

Representative Levin’s first Constituent of the Month is Shelby Jacobs, of Oceanside, a retired aerospace engineer who worked for 40 years on NASA’s Apollo and Space Shuttle programs. Mr. Jacobs served in a number of roles, including Project Manager of the Apollo-Soyuz orbiter, and designed a breakthrough camera used to capture iconic images of a rocket separation on Apollo 6 in 1968.

As an African-American in an industry with few people of color at the time, Mr. Jacobs faced significant difficulties, including unequal pay and often unfair treatment. Now, Mr. Jacobs serves as the role model he never had for himself, helping highlight other “Hidden Figures,” showing young people of color what they can achieve in the face of racism, discrimination, and inequality of opportunity, and calling for action to address injustices that still exist today.

(Photo courtesy: Office of Rep. Mike Levin)

Levin spoke on the floor of the House of Representatives to highlight Mr. Jacobs’s story. Click here for video of Representative Levin’s remarks and see below for a transcript:

As the Congress member for California’s 49th District, it is my distinct honor to represent over 700,000 Californians from North County San Diego and south Orange County.

 I’ve met countless constituents across the district who do incredible work to make our communities stronger, and I’m proud to serve them in Congress.

 With so many outstanding constituents, I thought it would be appropriate to start a new “Constituent of the Month” program to recognize individuals who have gone above and beyond to help their neighbors, give back to their community, and make our country stronger.

 For our first Constituent of the Month, I am thrilled to recognize Mr. Shelby Jacobs, of Oceanside, a retired aerospace engineer who worked for 40 years on NASA’s Apollo and Space Shuttle programs.

 Mr. Jacobs served in a number of roles, including Project Manager of the Apollo-Soyuz orbiter, and designed a breakthrough camera used to capture iconic images of a rocket separation on Apollo 6 in 1968.

As an African American in an industry with few people of color at the time, Mr. Jacobs faced significant difficulties, including unequal pay and often unfair treatment.

 Now, Mr. Jacobs serves as the role model he never had for himself, showing young people of color what they can achieve in the face of racism, discrimination, and inequality of opportunity, and calling for action to address injustices that still exist today.

He told the San Diego Union-Tribune, and I quote, “It’s important to be a pioneer but I want people to understand that while we appreciate the progress, things need to be done to address the inequality. That’s something that was there when I started and it’s still happening today right up to the very top level of our government,” end quote.

 Mr. Jacobs’s story has helped highlight other “Hidden Figures” who have gone without recognition – particularly people of color and women – for their extraordinary contributions to our country.

 I have no doubt that Mr. Jacobs’s efforts to touch the lives of young people and address inequality has had a profound impact on our community, and will continue to do so.

 Shelby Jacobs is an inspiration to me and so many others, and I’m proud to call him our first Constituent of the Month.