Press Release of U.S. Senator Barbara Boxer
|For Immediate Release: |
August 3, 2012
Washington D.C. Office (202) 224-3553
Boxer, Colleagues Praise Passage of Resolution Honoring First American Woman in Space, Dr. Sally Ride
Bipartisan Resolution Celebrates Her Legacy and Contributions to Science, Education and Human Spaceflight
Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senator Barbara Boxer (D-CA) joined with Senators Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), Olympia Snowe (R-ME), Barbara Mikulski (D-MD), Jay Rockefeller (D-WV), Bill Nelson (D-FL), Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-TX), and Chris Coons (D-DE) to introduce a resolution honoring the life and career of pioneering Astronaut Dr. Sally Ride – the first woman from the United States to fly in space – who passed away on July 23 at the age of 61. The resolution passed the Senate by unanimous consent last night.
“Dr. Sally Ride inspired millions of people, especially young women and girls, to reach for the stars,” Senator Boxer said. “After her illustrious career as an astronaut, she dedicated herself to encouraging children to explore the wonders of science.”
“Sally Ride blazed a trail for women around the world,” Senator Hutchison said. “I have always greatly admired her spirit and perseverance in accomplishing her goals and I know her legacy will live on in the millions of girls and women she inspired.”
“Dr. Sally Ride is a role model to women everywhere, and her lifelong work to advance interest in STEM studies is a huge contribution to the advancement of science and math education among young girls,” Senator Rockefeller said. “Her flight into space was historic and will always rank as an inspiration and memorable moment in the history of space flight.”
“Sally Ride was one of the great pioneers as the first American woman in space,” Senator Nelson said. “The whole nation was with her when she launched, lifting her up on a chorus of ‘Ride, Sally, Ride. Her historic flight and lifelong dedication to the advancement of science and exploration in America inspired so many to reach for the stars. ”
Born, raised, and educated in California, she became a role model and hero when she launched her first mission in 1983, becoming the first American woman to enter low Earth orbit. After flying two shuttle missions and serving as a member of the Presidential Commission investigating the Challenger accident, she became a professor, and eventually started “Sally Ride Science” in 2001, a company dedicated to promoting new and exciting ways to engage elementary and middle school students with science at an early age.
Dr. Ride also wrote 5 science books for children, entitled: To Space and Back, The Mystery of Mars, Voyager: An Adventure to the Edge of the Solar System, Exploring Our Solar System, and The Third Planet: Exploring the Earth from Space.
You can read the entire resolution below:
Whereas Dr. Sally Ride was born on May 26, 1951, in Los Angeles, California;
Whereas Dr. Ride graduated high school from Westlake School for Girls in Los Angeles in 1968, and received from Stanford University a Bachelor of Science in Physics and a Bachelor of Arts in English in 1973, a Master of Science in 1975, and a doctorate degree in physics in 1978;
Whereas the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (referred to in this preamble as “NASA”) selected Dr. Ride as an astronaut candidate in January of 1978;
Whereas Dr. Ride worked on the ground as a communications officer for the second and third NASA space shuttle missions (STS-2 and STS-3) and helped develop the robot arm used by shuttle crews;
Whereas, on June 18, 1983, Dr. Ride became the first woman from the United States to travel in space when she served as a mission specialist for space shuttle mission STS-7;
Whereas Dr. Ride also served as a mission specialist on space shuttle mission STS 41-G, which launched into space from the Kennedy Space Center in Florida, on October 5, 1984;
Whereas, in June of 1985, Dr. Ride was assigned to the crew of STS 61-M for which mission training terminated in January of 1986, following the space shuttle Challenger accident;
Whereas Dr. Ride served as a member of the Presidential Commission investigating the space shuttle Challenger accident and, upon completing that investigation, was assigned to NASA Headquarters as a Special Assistant to the Administrator for long-range and strategic planning;
Whereas, in 1989, Dr. Ride joined the faculty at the University of California, San Diego, as a Professor of Physics and Director of the California Space Institute, a research unit at the University of California;
Whereas, following her passion of motivating girls and young women to pursue careers in science, math, and technology, Dr. Ride founded her own company, known as Sally Ride Science, in 2001, to create entertaining science programs and publications for upper elementary and middle school students, as well as their parents and teachers;
Whereas, as a long-time advocate for improved science education, Dr. Ride initiated and directed education projects designed to fuel the fascination of middle school students with science and wrote 5 science books for children, entitled: To Space and Back, The Mystery of Mars, Voyager: An Adventure to the Edge of the Solar System, Exploring Our Solar System, and The Third Planet: Exploring the Earth from Space;
Whereas Dr. Ride served as a member of the President’s Counsel of Advisors on Science and Technology, the Space Studies Board, and the Pacific Council on International Policy;
Whereas Dr. Ride was a fellow of the American Physical Society and also served on the boards of the Office of Technology Assessment, the Carnegie Institution of Washington, the National Collegiate Athletic Association Foundation, the Aerospace Corporation, and the California Institute of Technology;
Whereas Dr. Ride was the only person to have served on commissions investigating both the space shuttle Challenger and Columbia accidents; and
Whereas Dr. Ride has received numerous honors and awards, including induction into the National Women’s Hall of Fame and the Astronaut Hall of Fame, the Jefferson Award for Public Service, the Wernher von Braun Memorial Award of the National Space Society, the Lindbergh Eagle Award, the Theodore Roosevelt Award of the National Collegiate Athletic Association, and 2 NASA Space Flight Medals: Now, therefore, be it
Resolved, That the Senate—
(1) expresses its deepest condolences to the family and friends of Dr. Sally Ride on her death;
(2) mourns the loss of Dr. Ride, a trailblazing pioneer who inspired millions of individuals, especially women and girls, to reach for the stars; and
(3) appreciates all of the contributions of Dr. Ride to science, physics, education, and human spaceflight.