Public Affairs Office Personnel Profiles:
Sam Archer   |   Tessa Kensington   |   Cassie Queen   |||   ABOUT OUR STORY

Thursday, November 19

A Search Mission Begins

Well, folks, our runabout, USS Liberty, did not return to the Alpha Quadrant today. As a result, my civilian runabout, SS Jackson, is scheduled to depart on a search mission at 2200 hours this evening. We are heading into the Gamma Quadrant to track down the Liberty and her crew. If we can’t find them, we are under orders to return to the Enterprise in seven days. By that point, we can only hope they make it back on their own.

-Lieutenant Sam Archer

Wednesday, November 18

Sam Archer in the Gamma Quadrant; Liberty Overdue

A few hours ago, I returned from the Gamma Quadrant aboard my civilian runabout, the SS Jackson (hence the recent posting silence). I spent the last eight days as part of a second 5-person Starfleet crew exploring the other side of the Barzan Wormhole. I was the pilot (since my ship was being used for the mission). Our scheduled target was a binary star system near the GQ terminus of the wormhole. Some landed exploration was part of our objective, but we didn’t find any sentient life. There may, however, be mining potential on two of the planets. Starfleet doesn’t maintain any mining operations, so it is likely that civilian companies could send vessels out this way, if they see profit potential.

In other news…

Upon my return to the Enterprise, I was disturbed to discover that our other runabout, the USS Liberty, has not yet returned from their two-week mission. They left the Enterprise on November 2, and were due back on Monday. They are now two days late. There was some flexibility in their mission parameters, so, they could be fine, and might return tomorrow. They could also be in distress – we have no active communication, so we wouldn’t know either way.

Since our second Starfleet runabout is not equipped for extended recon operations (we swapped out the USS Paladin for a rear-access cargo runabout at Qualor III), I’ve been told that my SS Jackson could be called upon to go search for the USS Liberty, if they don’t return by tomorrow evening. I’ve been asked to prep the Jackson, and have it ready to launch again, just in case. Thankfully, I have a team of shuttlebay engineers who help me keep the Jackson maintained; I have assistance. Still, tomorrow could be a very busy day, as I get a new rescue-oriented crew ready for launch.

We have sent a few Type-6 and Type-7 shuttles through the wormhole – some are still conducting sensor missions, but none of them have the kind of distance range native to a runabout. If the Liberty doesn’t return, I’ll be heading out again, to find it.

-Lieutenant Sam Archer

Saturday, November 7

Hostilities At The Wormhole

We had two ships arrive at the Barzan Wormhole today. The first was a Yridian scout vessel that wanted to pass through to the Gamma Quadrant. We had to turn them away since we are merely securing the wormhole for Federation administration, and do not yet have the infrastructure or commercial policies in place to allow non-claim transit.

The second vessel was a Son’a combat vessel. They demanded the right to access the wormhole, and refused to accept both the Federation claim, and our need to turn ships away until Deep Space 5 arrives. They became hostile, and were forced away by a few of our fighter squadrons. I would not be surprised if they return with more ships. The Son’a homeworld is roughly ten light years from the Barzan System.

News of this stable wormhole is starting to inspire curiosity, and will likely lead to additional vessels seeking access to the distant Gamma Quadrant.

-Lieutenant Sam Archer

Monday, November 2

Gamma Quadrant Operations Begin

Earlier today, our runabout, USS Liberty, entered the Barzan Wormhole, and began its exploratory mission deep into the Gamma Quadrant. The crew of five Starfleet personnel will be engaged in scientific and discovery objectives, both in space, and on the ground. They will be the first Federation citizens to venture away from the wormhole. God speed, Liberty. Bring back some fascinating data, maps, artifacts, etc. Be safe, and we’ll see you in two weeks.

-Lieutenant Sam Archer

Sunday, November 1

PAO Halloween Costumes, 2365

This was our first year dressing up for Halloween in the Enterprise Public Affairs Office. My staff and I discussed a few themes, and settled on historical costumes. We were not required to dress as specific historical figures, however, all costumes did have to represent a specific era from Earth or Federation history. In addition, all costumes had to be made from scratch, although, we were allowed to seek help from the onboard tailors. These are the holoimages taken of all six of us, in the costumes we chose. 

I, Lieutenant Sam Archer, have a deep fascination with the American Civil War on Earth (1860s). I have studied this event quite extensively, and have great respect for the troops that fought on both sides. I took the opportunity to create the military uniform of a Union soldier -- a sergeant in the United States Army. The gold buttons on the jacket are replicas that I acquired from a costumer on Earth.

Standing next to me, is Petty Officer Kellin Granderson. He chose to recreate the 2260s Starfleet uniform worn by those who served aboard the Constitution-class USS Enterprise, under the command of then-Captain James T. Kirk. Kellin also wears the hip bag common to personnel operating in away teams. The gold shirt represents a command officer.

On the left, above, is Ensign Cassie Queen. She chose to dress as a Medieval woman from Earth's history, complete with shoulder cape, overdress, and leather belt bags. Her boots are real leather, and custom-made by a company in Texas, on Earth.

Next to her is Lieutenant (JG) Tessa Kensington. Tessa chose to create a dress representative of an Ancient Roman noblewoman on Earth. The dress includes a long piece of cloth, attached at the shoulders, and draped down her back. Though, not visible in this image, she is wearing leather sandals appropriate to the time period.

On the left is Crewman Sonya Rose. Her costume represents a popular fashion style worn in 2085, by the first colonists to settle on Proxima, in the Alpha Centauri System.

Petty Officer Zeyda Knight, on the right, is wearing a costume representative of a World War III survivor in Africa (Earth) of the late 2050s. She even went so far as to include a bandage on her arm, representing an injury suffered in a warzone. As most of us know, fighting was fierce in certain parts of Africa during the war, but ultimately led to a united African Confederation that played an important part in the global diplomacy of the post-war years.

-Lieutenant Sam Archer

Halloween in the PAO, 2365

This year, 2365, was our first year decorating the USS Enterprise-D Public Affairs Lounge for Halloween. Our staff chose a theme centered around history, so the lounge took on a dungeon-like appearance. Our new holowalls were programmed to show dark stone blocks; the lights were dimmed and reset to a red/blue format; and candles, vines, and branches were brought in to complete the look. Other Halloween decor was scattered throughout the room, including a rather creepy totem near the door to the corridor (seen above).

We actually hosted a costume party for the crew in the lounge, and put out cookies, donuts, and other baked goods as refreshments. The cookies were baked by Petty Officer Knight (in the adjacent lounge kitchen), and the other baked goods came from the bakery on deck 10.

In the photo above, you'll see some of this year's decor. The black curtains, behind the refreshment tables, were put up to hide the lounge's large wall screen, and the Baby Yoda figure, on the table, was lent from my personal collection. He usually sits on a shelf in my office.

This photo shows the decorated lounge, looking to port. Here, you can see the simulated stone walls, and some of the candles. The pumpkins on the far counter are not real, but fit nicely into this setting. The table pyramids were reset to warmer colors, to match the Holloween decor. They are usually blue when the lounge is undecorated.

In this photo, you can see the exterior wall of the PAO lounge. The black curtains are covering up the exterior windows. Those curtains are standard; we often keep them closed. In this setting, however, they work well with the darkened theme, as well as the table candles in front of the bulkhead pillars. The round carpets under the tables are part of the decor. We have a few different colors in storage.

Our staff did a great job on the decor this year. Lieutenant (JG) Kensington coordinated the design, with holowall design selection by Petty Officer Granderson. The lounge decorations were, in fact, such a big hit with those who attended the party last night, that we will likely make this an annual event.

-Lieutenant Sam Archer

Saturday, October 31

Celebrating Halloween On Deck 2

Happy Halloween!

If you’re aboard the Enterprise, come visit us in the Public Affairs Lounge, on deck 2. We’re having a costume party! We have refreshments, the lounge is decorated, and yes, the entire PAO staff is in costume – custom-made, historical costumes, in fact. We were putting them together -- in secret -- for the past few weeks. Aren’t we sneaky!

We’re also showing off our new holowalls, which were installed at Qualor III. We have a dungeon stone theme in use at the moment – it’s quite spooky!

The lounge will remain open until 0200 hours tomorrow morning, so that those who are currently on Beta Shift can enjoy the festivities once their shift ends, at midnight. Come visit, chat, and celebrate. Costumes are always welcome.

And yes, I’ll share some photos of the costumes and decorated lounge tomorrow.

Come join us! We’re having a lot of fun up here on deck 2!

-Lieutenant Sam Archer

Friday, October 30

Back Into The Gamma Quadrant

Our runabout, USS Liberty, is being prepped for a two-week exploratory mission into the Gamma Quadrant. The vessel is scheduled to enter the Barzan Wormhole on Monday morning, and will carry a crew consisting of a pilot, a security professional, and three junior science officers. They will be outfitted for space observation, as well as landed missions.

According to the mission plan, the Liberty and her crew will be investigating a small nebula not far from the wormhole terminus, a large slow-moving comet, and two planets, one of which may be class-M. Beyond that, they are free to investigate additional discoveries within their zone of operations. Once the two-week mission is complete, the Liberty will re-enter the wormhole, and return to the Enterprise.

Beyond the Liberty, discussions remain in the works for additional missions into the Gamma Quadrant, one of which could include my civilian runabout, the SS Jackson. – Yes, I have chosen a name for my new runabout. I’ve named it the SS Jackson, in honor of my favorite Earth American Civil War general, Thomas Jonathan “Stonewall” Jackson. If approved for a mission, I would be the Jackson’s mission pilot.

Additional short-distance shuttle observation missions are also being planned, as well as a request from our fighter pilots to conduct a series of multi-craft flight maneuvers through the wormhole. A communications buoy is also being prepared for deployment outside the Gamma Quadrant terminus of the wormhole – to aid in communication through the phenomena.

The Enterprise itself remains parked outside the Alpha Quadrant terminus of the wormhole, and is presently serving as a temporary missions and defense platform, until the arrival of Deep Space 5. In addition, we are expecting a team of Barzan scientists to arrive aboard the Enterprise this weekend. They will be joining our science personnel, and gaining an up-close look at the form, physics, and functions of the wormhole.

-Lieutenant Sam Archer

Monday, October 26

Defending The Wormhole

The USS Enterprise-D has taken up a claim position at the mouth of the Barzan Wormhole, and will remain here until Deep Space 5 is delivered in a month. Our recent delegate guests have departed the Enterprise, and the senior staff has started to discuss possible runabout exploratory missions into the Gamma Quadrant.

We are on the leading edge of history, here, and I can’t think of a better place to be. Bring on the exploration; bring on the discovery. Let’s go where no one has gone before!

-Lieutenant Sam Archer

Saturday, October 24

Barzan Decides; Administrative Rights Determined

Earlier this afternoon, Premier Lequanita Bhavani, the leader of the Barzan Parliament, announced the winning bid for administrative rights to the wormhole near Barzan II.

Originally, her people were favoring the Chrysalians, who had hired a Human negotiator, Devinoni Ral, to manage their interests during these negotiations. Unfortunately, Mr. Ral has been accused of inappropriate behavior towards our Lieutenant Commander Deanna Troi, and has neglected to reveal his true identity as a partial Betazoid. Since the Barzans value honesty, they have abandoned their interests in the Chrysalian bid, and have accepted the Federation offer instead. As of roughly 1630 hours today, with the signing of the Barzan Wormhole Treaty, the Federation has administrative control of the Barzan Wormhole.

This treaty with the Barzans gives the Federation access to the wormhole, with Starfleet taking responsibility for the administration and defense of the conduit. In exchange, the Federation will open up new trade routes with Barzan II, which should greatly boost the Barzan global economy. Barzan will also retain its current autonomy, and remain independently governed, but become a Federation protectorate. Federation embassies and consulates will be established in the Barzan system, with a small contingent of Federation Port Guard ships assigned to help defend Barzan II. They will remain there until the Barzans are able to establish their own planetary defense fleet.

Starfleet will immediately begin the deployment of Deep Space 5 (the newest Galaxy-class saucer starbase – originally planned for deployment elsewhere). DS5 will be transported from Earth to Barzan II, and deployed at the mouth of the wormhole. It will then become the port of call for all ships entering or exiting the wormhole. Federation and future Barzan vessels will have free access to the wormhole, while vessels from other species and powers will be charged a transit fee. The fee will support wormhole maintenance, as well as the Barzan economy.

According to our best estimates, the Barzan Wormhole leads to the distant Gamma Quadrant, roughly 60,000 light years from Barzan II, and 150 light years from the Delta Quadrant. This has become a significant asset to the Federation and the Barzan people.

With negotiations complete, the Enterprise will remain near the wormhole until Deep Space 5 can be deployed in about a month. It is likely that the Enterprise will send multiple runabout-based exploratory missions through the wormhole during that time. Whether the Enterprise itself will be sent through the wormhole (after DS5 is deployed) remains uncertain.

-Lieutenant Sam Archer

Thursday, October 22

Beauty Above Barzan

The USS Enterprise-D brings beauty wherever she goes. This photo was taken by the crew of the runabout, USS Liberty, after it returned to the Alpha Quadrant earlier this week. The planet in the background is Barzan II.

-Lieutenant Sam Archer

Wednesday, October 21

In The Hands of the Barzan Parliament

The negotiations for rights to the wormhole came to an end today. Now we wait for the Barzan Parliament to determine which bid they wish to accept. Premier Bhavani has indicated that she will contact the delegates, here, on the Enterprise, in three days (on Saturday, Enterprise time). Until then, all delegates are free to enjoy the hospitality of the Enterprise and its facilities.

-Lieutenant Sam Archer

Monday, October 19

Politics While We Wait

Wormhole negotiations resumed in earnest today between the delegates from the Federation, Chrysalians, Suliban and Yridians. The Caldonians, who withdrew from the negotiations yesterday, have chosen to leave the Enterprise, and likely return home. Discussions will continue into tomorrow, possibly even Wednesday, and then Premier Bhavani will meet with her Barzan planetary parliament, and determine whose bid to accept.

It's all politics from this point forward, and as the host for these negotiations, we – aboard the Enterprise – just have to sit back and wait. I certainly hope the Federation wins administrative rights, however, all four powers have an equal chance at this point. Anything could happen.

-Lieutenant Sam Archer

A Stable Wormhole; Negotiations Continue

I was needed, yesterday, to assist Lieutenant Kensington and Petty Officer Granderson in their visitor administration duties, so I was unable to post this during my regular Beta Shift office hours. I’ll post this for the morning crowd instead.

Both our runabout, the USS Liberty, and the Suliban science shuttle, returned, yesterday morning, through the Barzan Wormhole. They are now the first known vessels to travel through a wormhole, from the Alpha Quadrant, to the Gamma Quadrant, and back again. The Suliban seemed pleased with the information they collected, and our runabout crew brought back enough sensor data to keep our stellar science departments busy for weeks. I, myself, will be spending some time looking over their reports later today as well.

Our data has been shared with all delegations present at these negotiations.

That being said, the final verdict is in: the Barzan Wormhole is stable, and, though it gives off unusually high energy readings, it should be adaptable for regular ship traffic. The Barzans do, without a doubt, have a valuable asset to negotiate with. And the Federation delegation will, undoubtedly, be placing a bid for administrative rights.

This is huge news for the Alpha Quadrant. There is now, by all scans and reports, a stable connection between Barzan space, and the distant Gamma Quadrant. This is the first stable wormhole known to exist.

In other related news, the Caldonians have withdrawn from these negotiations, citing an inability to effectively provide the resources required to administrate a wormhole. This leaves the Federation, the Chrysalians, the Suliban, and the Yridians to outmaneuver each other for the rights to this stable Barzan Wormhole.

-Lieutenant Sam Archer

Saturday, October 17

The First Mission Into The Gamma Quadrant

Our runabout, USS Liberty, has entered the Barzan Wormhole. It did so, alongside a Suliban science shuttle, at exactly 1033 hours this morning. Our crew’s mission is to spend 24 hours on the other side – deep in the Gamma Quadrant – gathering as much data as possible on the wormhole and local space near its terminus. That information will then be brought back to the Alpha Quadrant, and shared with all delegations here at Barzan II.

We did lose communication with both vessels shortly after they entered the wormhole (likely as a result of the intense energy disruptions from the wormhole itself), so, right now, we can only wait for their return. We have seen no alterations in wormhole composition since the vessels entered, so our hopes of a stable conduit remain.

We wish the crew of the Liberty a safe and prosperous mission, and look forward to seeing them again tomorrow morning.

-Lieutenant Sam Archer

Friday, October 16

The Barzan Wormhole

The USS Enterprise has arrived at its destination – Barzan II (near the Briar Patch). We have been asked to host negotiations that will determine the administrative rights to the first known wormhole in existence, recently discovered in the Barzan System.

Apparently, the Barzans (who do not yet have interplanetary space travel), discovered the wormhole near their home world, they sent an unmanned probe through the terminus, and that probe returned with data indicating that the wormhole leads to a distant region of the Gamma Quadrant (near the Denkiri Arm). The Barzans lack any significant resources, so they hope a diplomatic agreement with a nearby power will improve the economy of their planet.

Five local species/powers are present at these negotiations, the Federation, the Caldonians, the Chrysalians, the Suliban, and the Yridians. Each participant has arrived aboard the Enterprise with a team of diplomats and negotiators. Respected Human negotiator, Seth Mendoza, is leading the delegation from the Federation. Negotiations are taking place in our negotiation hall.

Earlier today, at around 1430 hours, a small reception was held in Ten Forward. Delegates in attendance were treated to a viewing of the Barzan Wormhole as it became visible outside the ship. According to Premier Bhavani of the Barzans, the wormhole appears every 240 minutes. The attached image is a view of the wormhole during this appearance.

After early negotiations, later this afternoon, Premier Bhavani agreed to allow one of our runabouts entry into the wormhole. Captain Picard and negotiator Mendoza believe it prudent to have more complete data on the wormhole (beyond what the Barzans have provided) before the negotiations continue. Our runabout, manned by a team of science officers, will enter the wormhole tomorrow morning, during the 1032 appearance. The Suliban have been granted permission to send a small science shuttle through at the same time.

Our runabout will spend 24 hours on the Gamma Quadrant side of the wormhole, gathering local data and observing the wormhole appearances during that time, and then return to the Enterprise, here at Barzan II. Our gathered data will be shared with all delegates, and then the negotiations can continue. Negotiations are likely to continue through next week.

To date, wormholes, like this, have only been theoretical. No other stable wormhole has ever been known to exist, so, if this is a viable wormhole, it could be a major asset to the Barzans, a significant scientific discovery, and an instant transport corridor to the distant Gamma Quadrant. It could open up new shipping lanes, and shift the balance of commerce in this sector.

-Lieutenant Sam Archer

Thursday, October 15

New Crew in the Public Affairs Office

Yesterday, I announced the addition of three new individuals joining our staff here in the Public Affairs Office. All three of them transferred aboard the Enterprise at Qualor III, and had been serving at various Starfleet facilities in the Qualor System.

On the left of this image is Crewman Sonya Rose. She is originally from Texas on Earth, and will be serving as my administrative assistant. Her duties will include assisting me in the management of the public affairs office.

In the center, is Petty Officer First Class Kellin Granderson. Kellin is from Proxima Colony in the Alpha Centauri System. He has been assigned as Lieutenant Tessa Kensington’s assistant, and will be working with her in her duties as the visit coordinator for all Starfleet and VIP personnel coming aboard the Enterprise.

On the right, is Petty Officer Third Class Zeyda Knight. Zeyda calls South Africa (on Earth) home. She is Ensign Cassie Queen’s new assistant, and will be helping Cassie oversee and administrate the various Starfleet publications put out by this office – both for the crew, and outside civilian media outlets.

None of our three new staff members will be posting, here, on our public Facebook page, but they can be seen working throughout our PAO rooms on deck 2. All of them share office space in the former unused lab on this deck.

If you see them around, either on the Enterprise entertainment decks, or here on deck 2, take a moment and welcome them aboard. I’m sure they would appreciate it.

-Lieutenant Sam Archer

Wednesday, October 14

Updates From the PAO

The Enterprise is on schedule to arrive at our destination on Friday. I am still unable to comment on any details about this mission until then. As previously noted, it is diplomatic in nature, and the Enterprise does have the assets and resources necessary to complete this assignment.

That being said, I apologize for the lull in updates since we left Qualor III. I had specific content plans, but those were pushed back due to administrative needs. With very little of note happening aboard the Enterprise (while we are at warp), and with the sensitive nature of our assignment, my attention was pulled elsewhere. I will rectify that in the coming days.

One of these distractions, though, may be of interest to you. As I noted -- before we left Qualor III, our Public Affairs office has been assigned some new auxiliary staff. Three new individuals have become part of our office. There are now six of us fulfilling the needs of the PAO. With a ship as large as the Enterprise, there has become more work than Tessa, Cassie, and myself can handle. Thankfully, our new personnel have proven essential in easing this burden, and I will introduce you to these individuals tomorrow.

In the meantime, I have a briefing to attend in a few minutes, so I’ll have to cut things short. Have a wonderful evening, and, for some of you, I’ll be back in-office later this evening.

-Lieutenant Sam Archer

Wednesday, October 7

Saving Ronald Reagan

Happy Wednesday from Lieutenant (JG) Tessa Kensington.

I’m stepping in to post a quick message on behalf of Lieutenant Archer. He was given the day off, after experiencing another one of his historical dreams this morning. He informed me that, this time, he experienced the events of the assassination attempt on the old Earth United States President, Ronald Reagan, in 1981, through the eyes of one of the two Secret Service agents shot that day. Unfortunately, he experienced the event as Darren Drake, the Secret Service agent who stepped in front of the President, and was killed by the third bullet.

The dream rattled Lieutenant Archer (more than most of his other dreams), and, after reporting the experience to his assigned counselor (as he usually does), he was ordered to take the day off. He should be back in his office tomorrow. I apologize, on his behalf, for the delay in news/content he had intended to share.

For those who are concerned, don’t worry, he'll be fine – nothing to worry about in regards to his ongoing health. I just talked to him about an hour ago in his quarters, and he was in good spirits. These historical dreams have become common for him since the Devron Anomaly, although, most of them don’t end in trauma -- like the dream this morning.

All is well… Lieutenant Archer just isn’t on duty today.

-Lieutenant (JG) Tessa Kensington

Monday, October 5

Departure: Qualor III; Mission Underway

The Enterprise has left drydock, we have exited the Qualor System, and we are currently at warp, heading to our next assignment. Unfortunately, at this time, I cannot share any details of our new mission. They are being kept confidential, for reasons of Federation security. I can, however, state that our mission will be one of diplomacy. The Enterprise has been called upon to complete this mission, since we are the flagship of the fleet, and we will rely heavily upon our diplomatic staff upon arrival.

It will be a few days before we drop out of warp, so, I suppose this week is a good opportunity to focus on internal ship and crew affairs. I’ll start with some news tomorrow, and we can go from there. Our crew is rested, our ship is restocked… it’s time to revisit the stars.

-Lieutenant Sam Archer