Together in innovation: inner space and outer space

Dr. Proctor is a geologist, explorer, space artist, and astronaut. She is the mission pilot on the fully orbital Inspiration4 mission to space. She is also one of The Explorer Club 50: Fifty People Change the World. Her tagline is “Space2inspire,” and she encourages people to use their unique strengths and passions to inspire those within their reach and beyond. She believes that we need to actively strive for a JEDI space: a just, equitable, diverse, and inclusive space as we advance in human spaceflight.

She uses her space art to encourage conversations about women of color in the space industry. She is also a representative astronaut and has completed four analog missions, including the all-female SENSORIA Mars 2020 mission in Habitat Habitat for Analog Space Exploration and Simulation (HI-SEAS), the four-month NASA-funded Mars mission at HI-SEAS, the Mars mission Two-week mission at the Martian Desert Research Station (MDRS), and two-week lunar mission at LunAres Habitat. She believes that when we solve problems in space, we also solve problems on Earth. It promotes sustainable food practices used in space exploration as a way to reduce food waste on Earth. She has given a TEDx talk titled Eat Like a Martian and has published the cookbook Meals for Mars.

Dr. Proctor was a finalist for the 2009 NASA Astronaut Program and came down to the yes/no phone call, which came from astronaut Sunita Williams. She is an international speaker who enjoys participating in educational outreach. She is a continuous ambassador for the Solar System at NASA and serves on the Explore Mars board of directors, the JustSpace Alliance advisory board, the Wilderness Science Advisory Council, the USA SEDS Advisory Council, and the National Science Education Association’s Space Advisory Council. In 2019, she was the Science Communication Officer at JOIDES Resolution Expedition 383 and spent two months at sea with researchers investigating polar current dynamics in the Antarctic. She also participated in the two-week Faculty Development Seminar “Exploring Urban Sustainability” in India. She was NOAA’s 2017 Instructor at Sea, 2016 Chilean Astronomy Ambassador (ACEAP), and 2014 PolarTREC Instructor researching climate change in Barrow, Alaska. She is a pilot in the Civil Aviation Patrol and serves as an Aerospace Education Officer on the Arizona Pavilion.

Dr. Proctor spent 21 years as a professor teaching geology, sustainability and planetary sciences at South Mountain Community College in Phoenix, Arizona. She is currently the Open Learning Resource Coordinator for the Maricopa Community College District. She has a Bachelor’s in Environmental Science, a Master’s in Geology, and a Ph.D. Curriculum and Instruction: Teaching Science. She recently completed a sabbatical at the Center for Education Through Exploration at Arizona State University, and has created virtual field trips. I did my sabbatical 2012-13 at FEMA’s Institute of Emergency Management, where I developed the disaster science curriculum. She has appeared in many international science programs and is currently in a world without NASA and Strange Evidence.

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