Wednesday, October 06, 2010 - 11:45 AM
Mary Ellen Weber, PhD, MBA
Former NASA Astronaut
Bent Tree Country Club
Dr. Mary Ellen Weber was a NASA Astronaut for ten years and is the veteran of two Space Shuttle flights. In 2000, she flew aboard the Space Shuttle Atlantis on mission STS-101, a pioneering and critical early construction mission for the International Space Station. She also flew in 1995 on mission STS-70, primarily launching a communications satellite into earth orbit. She is among the youngest Astronauts ever to venture in space, having traveled 297 earth orbits and 7.8 million miles. In addition to her experience in the Astronaut Corps in mission operations and development, she held key positions in building businesses from space research, in strategic communications, and in program oversight. She is the recipient of the NASA Exceptional Service Medal.
Dr. Weber is currently Vice President for Government Affairs and Policy at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, which is internationally renowned for its fundamental medical research and is part of the largest academic medical center in the nation.
Dr. Weber received a Ph.D. in physical chemistry from Berkeley, an M.B.A. from SMU, and a B.S. in chemical engineering from Purdue. She has authored eight scientific papers and one patent. Dr. Weber is an active skydiver, with over 4,000 skydives to date, twelve silver and bronze medals at the U.S. National Skydiving Championships, and a world record for the largest freefall formation with 300 skydivers. In addition, she is an instrument-rated pilot with over 600 hours in NASA's jet aircraft.