NASA’s Kathy Leuders to Receive NSS Space Pioneer Award at ISDC

Kathy Leuders

The Annual International Space Development Conference (ISDC) will be Held in Arlington, VA, May 27-29, 2022

The National Space Society is pleased to announce that Kathy Lueders, the Associate Administrator of the Human Exploration and Operations (HEO) Mission Directorate for NASA, will be a featured speaker and recipient of the prestigious Space Pioneer Award at the NSS’s International Space Development Conference® (ISDC®) this year.

“Lueders has had a long and distinguished career at NASA, and we welcome her as the first woman to head human spaceflight for the agency,” said Anita Gale, NSS CEO. “Her work with commercial spaceflight partners has been visionary, and she is an inspiration to women interested in aerospace and STEM fields everywhere.”

Starting her career at NASA in the 1990s, Lueders was the second woman to work at the White Sands Test Facility while still a university student. After graduation she moved on to the space shuttle program, working in orbital maneuvering systems, then for the International Space Station program at the Johnson Space Center. After the retirement of the shuttle system, she continued with NASA in the Commercial Crew Program (CCP), ultimately becoming the program manager for CCP.

In June 2020, then-NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine announced her selection as the new Associate Administrator for human spaceflight. “Kathy gives us the extraordinary experience and passion we need to continue to move forward with Artemis and our goal of landing the first woman and the next man on the Moon by 2024,” said Bridenstine at the time.

Previous recipients of the Space Pioneer Award include shuttle astronaut Eileen Collins, SETI visionary Frank Drake, the Jet Propulsion Laboratory’s Chief Engineer Rob Manning, and SpaceX president Gwynne Shotwell. The award will be presented at the ISDC on May 27 where Lueders will give a keynote.

The International Space Development Conference will be held from May 27-29 in Arlington, Virginia, and is open to the public. The ISDC hosts dozens of informative talks over three days and is the premiere conference for human spaceflight and space settlement. For more information and registration see the ISDC 2022 website.


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