Kathryn sullivan

For those of a similar name, see Kathy Sullivan (disambiguation).
Kathryn Sullivan
NASA Astronaut
Nationality American
Status Retired
Born (1951-10-03) October 3, 1951 (age 62)
Paterson, New Jersey
Other occupation Geologist
Rank Captain, United States Navy
Time in space 22 days 04 hours 49 minutes
Selection 1978 NASA Group
Total EVAs 1
Total EVA time 3 hours 29 minutes
Missions STS-41-G, STS-31, STS-45
Mission insignia

File:Kathryn Dwyer Sullivan in 1981.ogv

Kathryn Dwyer Sullivan (born October 3, 1951 in Paterson, New Jersey) is an American geologist and a former NASA astronaut. A crew member on three Space Shuttle missions, she is the first American woman to walk in space.


Dr. Sullivan is a 1969 graduate of William Howard Taft High School in Woodland Hills, California. She was awarded a bachelor in science degree in Earth Sciences from the University of California, Santa Cruz in 1973, as well as a Ph.D. in geology from Dalhousie University in 1978.[1]

Military career

In 1988, Dr. Sullivan joined the U.S. Naval Reserve as an oceanography officer, retiring with the rank of Captain in 2006. She has served as chief scientist for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Before NASA, Dr. Sullivan worked in Alaska as an oceanographer.

NASA career

Dr. Sullivan performed the first EVA by an American woman during Space Shuttle Challenger mission STS-41-G on October 11, 1984. She flew on three space shuttle missions and logged 532 hours in space.[1]

After NASA

After leaving NASA, Dr. Sullivan served as President and CEO of the COSI Columbus, an interactive science center in Columbus, Ohio and as Director for Ohio State University's Battelle Center for Mathematics and Science Education Policy as well as a volunteer science advisor to COSI. She was appointed to the National Science Board by President Bush in 2004.

In 2004, Dr. Sullivan was inducted into the Astronaut Hall of Fame.

Also in 2004, Dr. Sullivan received the Adler Planetarium Women in Space Science Award.

In 2009, Dr. Sullivan was elected to a three-year term as the Chair of the Section on General Interest in Science and Engineering for the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

In January 2011, the White House sent to the Senate the nomination of Dr. Sullivan by President Barack Obama to be an assistant secretary of commerce. Dr. Sullivan was first nominated in December 2010, but because the Senate didn't approve her nomination and a bevy of others forwarded late in December, the White House renewed the formal requests.

On May 4, 2011, Dr. Sullivan, was confirmed by unanimous consent of the U.S. Senate and appointed by President Obama to serve as assistant secretary of commerce for environmental observation and prediction and deputy administrator for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.[2]

Dr. Sullivan was appointed as Acting Under Secretary of Commerce for Oceans and Atmosphere and Acting NOAA Administrator on February 28, 2013.[3]


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