Kathryn Clark has one professional objective: “To entertain people and sneak education in when they’re not looking.” Clark has been meeting her objective for more than a decade. Prior to starting her own science and education-consulting firm, Docere, LLC she was NASA’s Chief Scientist for the International Science Program and NASAs Chief Scientist for the Human Exploration & Development of Space Enterprise.
Dr. Clark is currently the president of Docere, a limited liability company that specializes in science and education. The science arm of the company partners with Jean-Michel Cousteau’s Ocean Futures Society, the Argos Foundation, the National Marine Sanctuaries, and the Sea World’s Hubb Institute to enhance research of oceans and marine wildlife and the use of the data for education and awareness of the environment of the seas. The second arm of Docere is an education company dedicated to helping teachers engage students using the Internet and exciting educational tools. Partners in education include The Convergence Education Foundation, of which Dr. Clark has been promoted to Chief Scientist, and SAS Games, Inc. Clark also serves on the Board of Trustees of Western Reserve Academy and on the Board of Directors of Orion’s Quest, an education oriented not-for-profit organization that provides opportunities for high school students to take part in real space flight experiments.
Dr. Clark’s emphasis is on “Human Factor”; all the elements necessary for health, safety, and efficiency of crews involved in long duration space flight. Her scientific interests are focused on neuromuscular development and adaptation to altered environments such as space or Earth’s oceans. She serves on the NASA Return to Flight Task Group, a select external advisory body established after the tragic Columbia accident to improve safety for our astronauts.
Dr. Clark chairs the boards of Michigan Technological University as well as Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University. She serves on the Board of Trustees of the National Marine Sanctuary Foundation, the Board of Directors of Women in Aerospace, the Board of Advisors of Jean-Michel Cousteau’s Ocean Futures Society, and the board of the Space Day Foundation. She is a member of the American College of Sports Medicine, The Society of Neuroscience, both the American and International Societies for Gravitational and Space Biology, the NASA Advisory Council Task Force on International Space Station Operational Readiness and the International Society of Women Pilots.
Dr. Clark has been honored by Women in Aerospace with their “Outstanding International Leadership Award” and has been inducted into the National Women’s Museum in Dallas, TX. She was awarded the NASA “Goddard Space Flight Center Customer Service Excellence Award” and the NASA “Space Flight Awareness Team Award.” She has also received the Western Reserve Academy “Waring Prize for Outstanding Alumni Contributions to the Community”.
Okay, so you’re thinking, “Geez, what a nerd,” aren’t you? SO WRONG. You cannot be a nerd and own a jazz club, which Dr. Clark does. In addition, she enjoys cycling, swimming, and cross-country skiing, a classic sport of her native Michigan, where she still resides with her husband. So, apparently we may not be able to have it all… but Dr. Kathryn Clark comes as close as anyone you’ll ever encounter.
• International Space Station – Some Assembly Required: Teamwork in 12 Languages
In all the years of space flight, there have been many near misses, but only 3 disasters: