Monday, May 16, 2005
The 100 Most Influential People in Ufology Today
Dan Akroyd, actor, has a long-held fascination with UFO phenomena, and was named as MUFON’s official Hollywood Consultant in 2004. In a recent interview about his newly bestowed title, Akroyd commented, “There’s footage (on MUFONs website) of some of the stuff that we’re getting out of California, some objects that are very credible.” His fame, influence, and public pro-UFO comments easily land him a spot on Fate’s 100 Most Important People in Ufology list.
Jan Aldrich is the coordinator of PROJECT 1947, a worldwide effort to document the origins of the modern UFO phenomenon. Aldrich’s project has compiled a massive amount of data ranging from government documents, newspaper stories, magazine clippings, and other documents. Much of the material gathered by PROJECT 1947 is on display at their website www.project1947.com.
Stephen Bassett is the United States’ only congressional UFO lobbyist. He is the founder of the Paradigm Research Group and Executive Director of the Extraterrestrial Phenomena Political Action Committee (X-PPAC). Bassett also runs the popular Paradigm Clock website and is a frequent guest on radio talk shows around the country. In 2002, he ran as an independent in the congressional campaign for the 8th District of Maryland. Bassett’s annual X-Conference in Washington, D.C., is widely regarded as one of the most important annual gatherings of ufologists in the United States.
Timothy Green Beckley, “Mr. UFO,” is a prolific author and publisher of UFO books, and the force behind the popular website www.conspiracyjournal.com. Beckley’s take on UFOs? “Some UFOs may be interplanetary craft, but the majority have to be placed in some other category. During radio and TV interviews the host always asks about my opinion on UFOs. I always tell him it doesn’t matter what my opinion is, UFOs act independently of my beliefs or anyone else’s!”
Art Bell. When it comes to influential people in contemporary ufology, this late-night talk show host finds himself near the top of the heap. From his one-man broadcasting center in Pahrump, Nevada, Bell hosts the weekend edition of Coast to Coast AM, one of the most successful overnight talk radio shows in history. The creator and original weeknight host of Coast to Coast AM, Art Bell made the show wildly popular around the world, exploring such topics as UFOs, remote viewing, crop circles, cattle mutilations, conspiracy theories, and more. Bell retired from the show he made famous in 2000, but eventually returned in 2003 to become Coast’s weekend host.
Don Berliner serves as chairman of the Fund for UFO Research and is co-author of the recent book Crash at Corona, along with fellow ufologist Stanton Friedman. He is the author of numerous books and articles on aviation.
William Birnes is a best-selling author (The Day After Roswell), a New York literary publishing agent who has written and edited more than 25 books and encyclopedias, and publisher of UFO Magazine.
Greg Bishop is the editor of The Excluded Middle, a quarterly publication that brings readers articles on UFOs and general Fortean topics. His work has also appeared in UFO Magazine, Magical Blend, and Fortean Times. Bishop’s latest book is Project Beta: The Story of Paul Bennewitz, National Security, and the Creation of a Modern UFO Myth.
Errol Bruce-Knapp has worked in broadcast media for over 45 years and is the host of Strange Days Indeed, a Toronto, Ontario, UFO radio show. He’s been intrigued by UFOs for many years and got involved, on an almost full-time basis, in 1993 when he got his first computer and joined the Ontario chapter of MUFON. His website, www.virtuallystrange.com, is the online meeting place of choice for many of today’s top ufologists.
Larry Bryant operates the Washington, D.C., office of the UFO group Citizens Against UFO Secrecy (CAUS). Recently retired after a 36-year career in writing and editing for U. S. Army publications, Bryant says, “My government career paralleled my ufological pursuits; not always amicably. That certainly related to my having filed more UFO-related lawsuits in federal court than has anyone else in the entire universe.” Bryant’s UFO beliefs fall into the traditional “UFOs as mechanical craft created by extraterrestrial biological entities” category. He says, “If the hard-core evidence of UFO reality (i.e., ‘some UFOs represent somebody else’s spaceships’) were to be weighed by a grand jury, I have little doubt that an indictment would be handed down, an indictment shaming and rebuking the high priests of Scientism.”
Grant Cameron is one of Canada’s leading ufologists. He has studied and written extensively about Wilbert Smith, head of the Canadian government’s UFO investigation, Project Magnet. His most recent research involves U.S. presidents and UFOs. Cameron is, perhaps, most famous for a question he posed to U.S. Vice President Dick Cheney about UFOs on a live radio show in 2001: “Have you ever been briefed on the subject of UFOs, and if you have, when was it and what were you told?” Cheney replied, jokingly, and semi-mysteriously, “Well, if I had been briefed on it, I’m sure it was probably classified and I couldn’t talk about it.”
Mark Carlotto, professional imaging expert, is one of the foremost investigators of Martian anomalies, having written numerous books, articles, analyses, and peer-reviewed papers on the subject. Carlotto currently serves as editor-in-chief of New Frontiers in Science, an online journal that examines unexplained and controversial phenomena.
Jerome Clark is a former editor-in-chief of Fate, former vice-president and current board member of the J. Allen Hynek Center for UFO Studies, editor of the quarterly publication The International UFO Reporter, and author of reams of UFO articles, papers, reviews, and books. His three-volume UFO Encyclopedia encompasses nearly every conceivable aspect of the UFO phenomena and is widely considered a classic.
Dwight Connelly has been editor of theMUFON UFO Journal since 1997 and is the editor of The World’s Best UFO Cases, one of the best UFO titles in print.
Scott Corrales is the editor of Inexplicata: The Journal of Hispanic Ufology, and of course, a frequent contributor to Fate. Corrales’ work in illuminating UFO reports out of Latin America has been invaluable to the field of ufology. Many of today’s best UFO reports are coming from this corner of the globe, and without his important reporting, many of these sightings would likely go unnoticed in the English-speaking world of North American ufology.
Peter Davenport is among the most important people in ufology today. Since 1994, he has been director of the National UFO Reporting Center (NUFORC), which takes daily UFO reports from across North America. Davenport reports on many of the UFO sightings NUFORC receives as a regular guest on Sightings with Jeff Rense and Coast to Coast AM, as well as during lectures and presentations at annual UFO conferences. In addition to being the director of NUFORC, Davenport has served as the director of investigations for the Washington Chapter of MUFON. Davenport has a lengthy and impressive resumé, including work experience as a college instructor, a commercial fisherman, a Russian translator in the Soviet Union, a fisheries observer, and a flight instructor, and political experience as a candidate for the Washington State legislature and the U.S. House of Representatives. Davenport’s recent work involving passive-radar techniques to detect UFOs may take ufology in an important new direction in coming years.
Paul Davids is a major Hollywood player when it comes to extraterrestrial phenomena. He was executive producer and co-writer of the Showtime film Roswell, starring Martin Sheen and Kyle MacLachlan, which was nominated for a Golden Globe as Best Television Motion Picture of 1994. Davids is a frequent speaker at many annual UFO events and has been an active proponent of ufology since his own UFO sighting in 1987.
Lisa Davis has succeeded Jim Moseley as chair of the annual National UFO Conference (NUFOC). Davis has been researching UFO and abduction phenomena for nearly a decade. In 2003, she formed The Foundation For Abduction Research And Support (FFARS) to educate, support, and empower individuals unwillingly involved in the abduction experience.
Preston Dennett is a California-based field investigator for the Mutual UFO Network (MUFON). He has had more than 70 articles published in most of the major UFO publications, including Fate and the MUFON UFO Journal. He is the author of UFO Healings, One in Forty: The UFO Epidemic, Extraterrestrial Visitations, and UFOs Over Topanga Canyon.
Richard Dolan, a relative newcomer to ufology, has made a major mark with his first book UFOs and the National Security State, hailed as one of the best UFO titles to hit the market in years when it was released in 2000. Dolan became interested in the UFO problem in 1994, approaching it from the standpoint of his academic training in history and politics. He was intrigued by the fact that mainstream and academic culture continued to treat UFOs as amusement, but that so many intelligent people privately had taken it seriously. Dolan is currently working on the much anticipated follow-up to his first book.
Ann Druffel began investigating UFO reports in southern California in 1957 as a member of the National Investigations Committee on Aerial Phenomena (NICAP). In 1970, she joined MUFON and the then newly-formed Center for UFO Studies (CUFOS). Druffel has personally researched over 2,000 Los Angeles Basin UFO reports through the years. As a writer, she has contributed over 180 articles on various aspects of the UFO enigma to numerous UFO journals and magazines and she has also written books, including How to Defend Yourself Against Alien Abuctions, and her latest, Firestorm, a biography of scientist and UFO researcher Dr. James McDonald.
Don and Vicki Ecker are the husband and wife team behind UFO Magazine, a bi-monthly publication dedicated to bring readers the best in all things UFO-related. Don has been the director of research for UFO Magazine since 1988. Vicki is the magazine’s editor-in-chief. A retired law enforcement officer, Don Ecker broke the STS-48 space shuttle UFO encounter on NBC and CNN. During the 1990’s he wrote the “Whistleblower” series for UFO Magazine detailing the stories of John Lear, Bob Lazar, and Bill Cooper. Together, Don and Vicki Ecker have put a skeptical but honest eye on the UFO subject through their magazine. Both appear at UFO conferences around the world on a regular basis.
Lou Farish runs the UFO Newsclipping Service, which produces a monthly newsletter of UFO stories that have appeared in newspapers around the world. Farish’s newsletter is an invaluable source of credible UFO reports. In addition, he is the organizer of the annual Ozark UFO Conference, held in Eureka Springs, Arkansas.
George Filer, East Coast director of MUFON, is the man behind “Filer’s Files,” a weekly roundup of UFO reports from around the world. “Filer’s Files” appears in the MUFON UFO Journal as well as on the Internet and is required reading for anyone interested in the subject.
Raymond Fowler has worked for decades on the UFO phenomenon, and his contributions to ufology are respected by researchers throughout the world. Fowler’s background includes a tour with the U.S. Air Force Security Service and 25 years with GTE Government Systems. His UFO investigation reports have been published in congressional hearings, military publications, newspapers, magazines, and professional journals in the United States and abroad. Fowler has served as chairman of the National Investigations Committee on Aerial Phenomena (NICAP) Massachusetts Subcommittee, as an early warning coordinator for the USAF-contracted UFO Study at the University of Colorado, as a scientific associate for the Center for UFO Study, and as director of investigations on the MUFON board of directors. His books include, UFOs: Interplanetary Visitors, The Andreasson Affair, Casebook of a UFO Investigator, The Watchers, The Allagash Abductions, and The Andreasson Legacy.
Stanton Friedman, longtime UFO researcher, author, and lecturer, is in the upper echelon of today’s UFO field. Friedman was employed for 14 years as a nuclear physicist for companies such as GE, GM, Westinghouse, TRW Systems, Aerojet General Nucleonics, and McDonnell Douglas. Since 1967, he has lectured on the topic “Flying Saucers ARE Real!” more than 600 times in 50 states, 9 provinces, and 13 other countries. He is the author of Crash at Corona and Top Secret/MAJIC, and has published more than 80 UFO papers and articles. He has provided written testimony to the U.S. Congress and has appeared twice at the United Nations. In 2002, Friedman was presented with a Lifetime Achievement Award in Leeds, England, by UFO Magazine (UK). Friedman believes that UFOs are alien spacecraft, that the subject of flying saucers represents a “Cosmic Watergate,” and that none of the anti-UFO arguments made by skeptics stand up to careful scrutiny. “We are dealing with the biggest story of the past millennium: visits to Earth by alien spacecraft and the successful cover-up by our governments.”
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