Eugene Wesley Roddenberry, Jr., also known as Rod, was born into a family empire that is adored by fans worldwide. He is the son of legendary science fiction producer Gene Roddenberry, whose television series Star Trek changed the face of television. Balancing his personal creativity with the responsibility of his family legacy, it is Eugene's ambition to be the guardian of his father's ideals as well as a champion of their introduction to a new generation.
Although Eugene resisted going into the family business throughout his teenage years, hints of him starting to follow in his father's footsteps were evident even at a young age. He quenched his thirst for space and astronomy working as a Telescope Operator at the Mt. Wilson Observatory during the summer. Eugene spent time teaching children to scuba dive at a camp in Big Pine Key, Florida, encouraging them to explore the unknown worlds below the ocean's surface. And during his years at Harvard-Westlake School, Eugene first dipped his foot into the entertainment industry as a Production Assistant on several of the Star Trek spin-off series.
Eugene's life changed dramatically during his senior year of high school with the passing of his father. It was at this point that he began to comprehend the enormity of the universe his father had created. Eugene realized that Star Trek was more than just a TV show, and wanted to understand why it touched the lives of so many.
As Rod started to understand the legacy he would be inheriting, college beckoned. Leaving Los Angeles to attend Hampshire College in Massachusetts, Rod balanced his educational path with his familial exploration. Studying Astronomy, Physics, and Photography, he delved into areas that intrigued and inspired him. Rod also spent time learning about Star Trek as well as his father's life and work. Stories from millions of fans and Gene's own writings, helped Rod discover a new world of philosophy, social & cultural commentary and the in-depth examination of the human condition.
Nearing the end of his college career, Eugene got the opportunity to join the Gene Roddenberry's Earth: Final Conflict television series as a Technical Advisor. For the next four years, Eugene relocated to Toronto, Canada and gained production experience, working with a brilliant cast and crew. He also came to realize the difficulties and disappointments that come with the business that is Hollywood. On top of a strong production foundation, Eugene gained a new respect for his father's accomplishments and set a higher bar of integrity for any future project that carries the Roddenberry name.
Since then, Eugene has spoken at science fiction conventions around the world and hosted worldwide forums on topics from literature to the future of space travel. He has taken a position as a board member on the X Prize (a private-sector, international space exploration competition), and tirelessly works to bridge the gap between science and science fiction by participating in efforts with NASA, JPL, The Planetary Society and The Kennedy Space Center.
In 2001, upon returning to Los Angeles, Eugene reopened the family merchandising business. He has since expanded the company, creating Roddenberry Productions the promise of which is to bring the Roddenberry Spirit and Ideals to people in new forms, through new media. The organization pledges the development and production of many multimedia projects including the completion of Eugene's first independent documentary, "Trek Nation." As a documentary about the positive influences of his father's work and how it has impacted lives around the world, Eugene hopes that "Trek Nation" will pay homage to the fans who have sustained his legacy and the father who created it.
Rod Roddenberry has joined the campaign against discrimination of homosexuality. Roddenberry believes his support of this movement embodies the principles of IDIC (Infinite Diversity in Infinite Combinations.), the Star Trek motto suggesting it is the uniqueness of things that make life interesting and worth living.
RIGHT: Rod Roddenberry poses for NOH8's continued media campaign against the passing or Proposition 8.
Roddenberry Dive Team (RDT) is committed to the promotion of education, exploration and stewardship of our oceans through safe diving activities. As a leader in the science fiction industry, RDT is passionate about incorporating the philanthropic ideals embedded in Star Trek into real world experiences for divers and non-divers around the world. We are committed to carrying on the legacy of vision and optimism that was handed down by Gene Roddenberry.
It is Rod's love of diving, exploration and the oceans that sparked the idea of the RDT. In his own words:
"I have found the world beneath the sea to be one of the most exotic and magical places on Earth. For me, diving is a unique experience that quenches my thirst for adventure and discovery. To take a page out of Star Trek, I love exploring strange new worlds and seeking out new life in our oceans. I look forward to seeing you underwater!"