Happy Labor Day

The first Monday in September is a holiday for many of us. It’s the beginning of the school year and the time when offices switch from casual summer dress back to suits and ties. We’ve taken our summer vacations and are ready to settle in for the fall.

But it’s also a day to thank an American worker. Our great country exists because of the people who get out of bed every day to build bridges and roads, run the checkout stand in the grocery store, patrol our streets, and keep planes and trains running on time and safely. And many protections we take for granted – weekends, 40-hour work week, paid holidays like Labor Day – came from the struggle and sacrifice of the American worker.

Labor Day is national tribute to the social and economic achievements of American workers. It is appropriate today that we honor the workers who contribute so much to the strength and prosperity of our country. NASA is a great example of what the American worker accomplishes in this country everyday. Over 18,000 civil servants and tens of thousands of contractors make it possible for this nation to dream big and achieve amazing things.

NASA’s vision is to reach for new heights and reveal the unknown so that what we do and learn will benefit all humankind. But we could not do any of that without the infrastructure created by the American worker. We could not build Mars rovers and launch rockets without the workers in the big factories and small independent businesses. We could not design the life support systems that keep us alive in orbit or on another planet without the teachers who help create an educated workforce. We could not create ways to make planes safer and more efficient without the innovators in the high tech sector.

To every American worker, whether you have the day off or are working hard, thank you.