Floating effortlessly in weightlessness, Kathryn Sullivan glided into Challenger's open cargo bay in 1984 as the first American woman to walk in space. On two later missions, she helped launch the Hubble Space Telescope and made an extensive study of earth's resources.
Sullivan was born October 3, 1951, in Paterson, N.J., and received a Bachelor of Science degree in earth resources from the University of California, Santa Cruz, in 1973; spent a year as an exchange student at Norway's University of Bergen, and earned a doctorate in geology from Dalhousie University, Halifax, Nova Scotia, in 1978. Her doctoral studies at Dalhousie included participation in several oceanographic experiments with the U.S. Geological Survey and Wood's Hole Oceanographic Institute. NASA selected her as an astronaut candidate in 1978, and on earning her wings, she concentrated on remote sensing research.
Sullivan left NASA in August 1992 to become Chief Scientist, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. She currently is president and CEO, Center of Science & Industry, Columbus, Ohio.