I'd like to know what he actually did, to get the award!
I'm sure he is deserving, I'm not suggesting otherwise, but the article is badly written.
It gives the impression of 'the old boys club' - self-congratulatory public-funded figures who self-congratulate themselves some more. Those folks who get into a cushy position then get awards because they are in a cushy position.
Just look at the statement in this piece;
"In particular, Kulcinski advised on nuclear power in space and chaired the committee on human resource issues regarding education and attracting a younger age group to the NASA workforce."
So, what this article is saying is that the means and methods of nuclear power in space have changed, in the time he was sitting on these committees, and that without him they'd have not changed?? Or that there are now more younger people in NASA than before?? If these are correct interpretations to this accolade, then the piece should've said "Three new nuclear power packs have gone into space, all being 10% better in specific power", and/or "There used to be 1,000 under21 applicants per year to NASA, who took 10, now there are 10,000 and NASA takes 100" and gone on to say "without the recipient, these things would not have happened"!
Without these objective measures, this piece indicates that this guy spent his time sitting on committees but didn't achieve anything. Public service should be about producing an end result. What were those end results?