avatar for Dr. Mae Jemison

Dr. Mae Jemison

Head of the 100 Year Star Ship Initiative

Dr. Mae C. Jemison is leading 100 Year Starship (100YSS), a bold, far reaching new initiative to assure the capabilities exist for human interstellar space travel to another star within the next 100 years. Jemison is building an international, multi-faceted organization to promote the broad global commitment, scientific, social and technical support and financial framework to accomplish the 100YSS vision - An Inclusive, Audacious Journey (that) Transforms Life Here on Earth and Beyond. Her team won the competitive, single awardee grant from DARPA (Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency), the US Defense Department’s premiere research group responsible for the development of the internet and GPS (global positioning satellite systems). 100YSS held its inaugural Public Symposium in Houston September 13-16, 2012.


Jemison started The Jemison Group, Inc. a technology consulting firm integrating critical socio-cultural issues into the design of engineering and science projects, such as satellite technology for health care delivery and solar dish Stirling engine electricity in developing countries. The Jemison Group explores and develops stand-alone science and technology companies. BioSentient Corporation, a medical devices and services company focused on improving health and human performance is such a company. An Environmental Studies professor at Dartmouth College, Jemison worked on sustainable development and technology design.


Jemison, the first woman of color in the world to go into space, served six years as a NASA astronaut. Aboard the Space Shuttle Endeavour, STS-47 Spacelab J mission in September 1992, she performed experiments in material science, life sciences and human adaptation to weightlessness.


Before joining NASA she was the Area Peace Corps Medical Officer for Sierra Leona and Liberia and a general practice physician in Los Angeles.


In 1994 Jemison started the international science camp The Earth We Share™ (TEWS) for students 12-16 years old. TEWS, is a program of the Dorothy Jemison Foundation for Excellence non-profit which launched TEWS-Space Race in 2011 in collaboration with the Los Angeles Unified School District; over four years it will impact up to 10,000 middle school students and train 400 teachers. Other foundation programs include Reality Leads Fantasy - Celebrating Women of Color in Flight that highlighted women in aviation and space from around the world.


Jemison is a member of the U.S. National Academy of Sciences’ Institute of Medicine and is on the boards of Kimberly-Clark, Scholastic and Valspar. She was the Founding Chair of the Texas State Product Development and Small Business Incubator Board, Chair the Texas State Biotechnology and Life Sciences Industry Cluster and the Greater Houston Partnership Disaster Planning and Recovery Task Force. She is a member of the Morehouse Board of Trustees and the Board of the Texas Medical Center. She serves as Bayer Corporation USA’s national science literacy advocate. Jemison is an inductee of the National Women’s Hall of Fame, the National Medical Association Hall of Fame and Texas Science Hall of Fame as well as a recipient of the National Organization for Women’s Intrepid Award and the Kilby Science Award among many honors. September 2011 she was a featured panelist on the CNBC special "The Business of Science".  


B.S., Chemical Engineering; Fulfilled requirements A.B., African and Afro-American Studies - Stanford University Earned Doctorate in Medicine, Cornell University.