By Lemchi Chidi
Today is a good day to talk about Jim Cantrell.
Who is Jim Cantrell?
I first heard about him in 2016 on the streets of New York, and I told the young lady who told me about him that Jim made a mistake. Her response was, “I think so”.
In 2001, Elon approached Jim and shared with him his dream of landing a man on Mars. Jim had 25 years of experience building space hardware then, and Elon had ZERO experience, but he had cash to fund this dream. Jim joined him as Vice President Business Development.
In 2002, one year after assuming the role of Vice President Business Development, Jim walked out on SpaceX and told Elon that his idea will not work. He walked away from an opportunity to make history.
Today, after series of trials, pains, disappointments, letdowns, subterfuges, and failures, SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket lit up its engines with astronauts Bob Behnken and Doug Hurley, and soared into upper atmosphere all the way into space.
Today, Jim Cantrell is watching history happen.
Today, Jim is watching an idea he said will never work.
Today, Jim will pick up his phone and call Elon to say congratulations.
First, they doubt you, then they take note of you, then they talk about you.