Meet the Astronauts of Color Selected by NASA for First U.S. Commercial Spaceflights
NASA has selected nine astronauts U.S. who will fly on American-made, commercial spacecraft to and from the International Space Station -- an endeavor that will return astronaut launches to U.S. soil for the first time since the space shuttle’s retirement in 2011. Among the nine astronauts selected is Sunita L. Williams. The Euclid, OH native received her U.S. Navy commission in 1987 and became a helicopter pilot before being chosen by NASA for the astronaut program in 1998. She received her Bachelors from the U.S. Naval Academy in 1987, and a Master's from the Florida Institute of Technology in 1995. The granddaughter of Indian immigrants previously held the record for total cumulative spacewalk time by a female astronaut. Joining Williams on the team is Victor J. Glover, Jr. who was selected as an astronaut in 2013 while serving as a Legislative Fellow in the office of Senator John McCain (R-AZ). The California native holds a Bachelors from California Polytechnic State University, a Master’s of Science in Flight Test Engineering from Air University at Edwards Air Force Base, a Master’s of Science in Systems Engineering from the Naval Postgraduate School, and a Master’s of Military Operational Art and Science from Air University in Montgomery, AL. This will be the Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Inc. member’s first spaceflight. Joining them will be Josh Cassada, Eric Boe, Nicole Mann, Christopher Ferguson, Douglas Hurley, Robert Behnken, and Michael Hopkins. The selections are the latest major milestone in the Obama administration’s plan to partner with U.S. industry to transport astronauts to space, create good-paying American jobs, and end the nation’s sole reliance on Russia for space travel. More here.