Sally Ride paved the way for many women by being the first American female in space in 1983. To date, 47 American women have now gone up and had the opportunity to see what no one else has.
Some of those pioneers spoke at the Thought Leaders Series at Space Center Houston on Thursday evening.
“We really wanted to recognize the great legends of the past but also how does that transfer to what we’re doing currently and what we’re going to be doing in the future?,” asks Tracy Lamm, the chief operating officer of Space Center Houston.
Children and adults alike were able to listen to their stories but also ask them questions.
Dr. Rhea Seddon recalled being able to talk to her son's class from space.
“I answered his question and all of the questions from his school," says Dr. Seddon. "We were getting to go out of contact. I thank the school for their excellent questions and said I could visit them after the flight and we went out of contact and I thought we were not speaking to the ground anymore and a little voice came out of the black void of space that said, 'I love you, mom. Have a safe trip home!'”
The women also spoke about current programs at NASA, space exploration and the commercialization of flights.
“I think all of us believe that there is a public-private interaction in space and I think I for one am looking forward to that," says Dr. Seddon. "it’s like the early days of aviation.”
“Of commercializing the space station and commercializing all of the other commercial aspects, you know with SpaceX and Virgin Galactic and all of those other different ones, if people get a chance to go into space just besides career astronauts, I think it will be a good thing,” says Dr. Anna Fisher.
For more information about future Thought Leader Series speakers, click here.