March 6, 2018 – With her book Hidden Figures: The Story of the African-American Women Who Helped Win the Space Race, author Margot Lee Shetterly made the world aware of the major contributions of three NASA mathematicians, who were also female and African-American, during the early years of the U.S. space program. Known as “human computers,” Katherine Johnson, Dorothy Vaughan and Mary Jackson contributed important work, such as calculating rocket trajectories for Mercury and Apollo missions. Shetterly became familiar with the women through her father, who was a research scientist at NASA-Langley Research Center.
Published in 2016, Hidden Figures reached number one on The New York Times Non-Fiction Best Sellers list and was made into a feature film the same year.
In 2018, Margot Lee Shetterly will receive the Space Foundation’s Douglas S. Morrow Public Outreach Award, presented annually to an organization or individual who has made significant contributions to the public awareness and understanding of space programs and technology.
The award’s namesake was an Academy Award-winning writer and producer, space advocate and early member of the Space Foundation board of directors. Morrow awardees have included:
2017 DigitalGlobe and The Associated Press
2016 Andy Weir, author
2015 NASA/Industry EFT-1 Team
2014 Col. Chris Hadfield (Ret.), former Canadian astronaut
2013 Bill Nye, CEO, The Planetary Society
2012 NASA Social Media Team
2011 Jay Barbree, NBC News; Marcia Dunn, The Associated Press; William Harwood, CBS News
2010 Leonard Nimoy, actor and director
2009 Dr. Neil deGrasse Tyson, astrophysicist
The 2018 Morrow Award will be presented on April 16 during the opening ceremony of the Space Foundation’s 34th Space Symposium, a four-day global space conference to be held at The Broadmoor in Colorado Springs, Colorado. See more about the Space Symposium at www.spacesymposium.org.