Eileen Collins Becomes the First Woman to Pilot a Space Shuttle
On this day, in 1995, Eileen Marie Collins became the first woman to pilot a Space Shuttle, aboard the STS-63 Discovery from February 3-11. This was the first flight of the joint Russian-American Space Program. Collins, who was a licensed Air Force pilot, is a veteran of four space flights and has logged hundreds of hours in space. In 1997, Collins also became the first woman to command a space shuttle mission. Collins retired from NASA in 2007 and has been recognized by numerous prestigious awards, such as the Distinguished Flying Cross and the French Legion of Honor.