Astronaut Collins has flown to space four times and led in space policy

Astronaut Eileen Collins has two major space firsts, the first woman to be a space shuttle pilot and the first to be a space shuttle commander. To honor her achievements, the National Space Society (NSS) has named Eileen Collins the 2019 recipient of NSS’ Space Pioneer Award for Historic Space Achievement.

“We are extremely honored and excited to have Eileen Collins join us at ISDC 2019,” said Bruce Pittman, NSS Chief Operating Officer. “Eileen exemplifies the best that our nation has to offer, a true pioneer. As the first female shuttle commander, she is an inspiration to young women worldwide. NSS is proud to honor Eileen for her spaceflight achievements, leadership qualities, and STEM education support.”

The prestigious award will be presented to Eileen Collins at the Society’s 38th annual International Space Development Conference (ISDC®), to be held in the Washington DC area at the Sheraton Pentagon City Hotel from June 6-9, 2019. NSS invites the public to come meet, interact and learn from Eileen Collins and attend her award ceremony.

For more information, see: isdc2019.nss.org.

With degrees from multiple colleges and universities, including two master’s degrees, Eileen was a pilot instructor and a mathematics professor at the Air Force Academy before entering the astronaut program in 1990. She then flew on shuttle missions in 1995 and 1997 as pilot, then in 1999 and the 2005 “return to flight” mission as commander. Since her retirement from NASA in 2006, she has stayed actively engaged in discussions about current and future US space policy and programs.

About the Space Pioneer Award

NSS Space Pioneer AwardThe Space Pioneer award consists of a silvery pewter Moon globe cast by the Baker Art Foundry in Placerville, California, from a sculpture originally created by Don Davis, the well-known space and astronomical artist. The globe, which represents multiple space mission destinations and goals, sits freely on a brass support with a wooden base and brass plaque as shown at right. The support and base are created by renowned sculptor Michael Hall of the Studio Foundry of Driftwood, TX. NSS has several different categories under which the award is presented each year, starting in 1988. Past recipients of the Space Pioneer Award include: Elon Musk, Ray Bradbury, Robert Bigelow, Apollo Astronaut Russell L. Schweickart, Dr. Michael Griffin, the Rosetta Mission Team, the Kepler-K2 Team, the New Horizons Mission Team and the Voyager Mission Team.

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