Almost 30 years ago, Women in Aerospace was founded to expand women’s opportunities for leadership and increase their visibility in aerospace. Each year since, they have recognized particularly exceptional women who have made outstanding contributions to the industry and to the advancement of women in the field. Today, we have the great privilege of introducing you to the nine Women You Should Know who will be honored at the 28th Women in Aerospace Awards Dinner and Ceremony later this month.

The aerospace umbrella encompasses a wide range of disciplines including human space flight, aviation, remote sensing, satellite communications, robotic space exploration, and the policy issues surrounding all of them. So when it comes to these Awards, we’re talking about women with serious brain power and a passion for technology and innovation. They are notable STEM role models, whose accomplishments and impact need to be celebrated and made visible, in order to inspire the next generation of game-changers.

That’s why we’re putting these nine women at the top of our list of Tech Tuesday STEM Rock Stars with the likes of Dr. Anita Sengupta and Natalie Panek, to name a few.

Meet the 2013 Women in Aerospace Awards recipients…

AEROSPACE AWARENESS AWARD: Michelle Thaller, Assistant Director of Science for Communications, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Maryland, for bringing NASA Science to life in the public eye by creating a breakthrough outreach program using TV, conferences and social media to get the scientists’ message out to the world.

Michelle Thaller

OUTSTANDING ACHIEVEMENT AWARD: Molly Brown, AST, Earth Science Remote Sensing, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Maryland, for her continued work in bringing critical information to the U.S. Government in the area of remote sensing and as an expert on impact of environmental dynamics on food security.

Molly Brown

AEROSPACE EDUCATOR AWARD: Julie Burr, Coordinator for Work Based Learning and Career Readiness, Aviation High School, Burlen, Washington, for her innovations in connecting students with real-world aerospace experience and mentorship, and her dedication to the next generation of STEM professionals.

Julie Burr

INITIATIVE, INSPIRATION, IMPACT AWARD: Kristin Rozier, Research Scientist, NASA Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, California, for exemplary achievement of formal specification, verification and validation of a Next Gen air traffic control system candidate and for dedication as a mentor and role model.

Kristin Rozier

LEADERSHIP AWARD: Catherine Steele, Vice President, Strategic Space Operations, The Aerospace Corporation, Colorado Springs, Colorado, is recognized as an exceptional role model and unparalleled leader, having made significant contributions to the aerospace field.

Catherine Steele

LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT AWARD: Jean Chamberlin, Vice President of Program Management, Boeing Defense, Space & Security, Tukwila, Washington, in recognition of her outstanding career and lifelong commitment to furthering the advancement of women’s opportunities in aerospace.

Jean Chamberlin

OUTSTANDING MEMBER AWARD: Sandy Coleman, Director, NASA Exploration Program, ATK Washington Operations, Arlington, Virginia, in recognition of her outstanding leadership, focus and dedication to WIA’s vision, goals and members. Her contribution is a pillar of WIA’s success and growth.

Sandy Coleman

WIA FOUNDATION SCHOLARSHIPS: Erin M. Kirchmeier, a junior in aerospace engineering sciences at Missouri University of Science and Technology (S&T) and Samantha B. Rawlins, a junior in mechanical engineering at California State University, Los Angeles will receive a $2,000 scholarship to be applied to the 2013-2014 academic year.

Scholarship Winners

These nine Women You Should Know will be honored at the 28th Women in Aerospace Awards Dinner and Ceremony on October 29, 2013 at the Ritz Carlton Hotel in Arlington, VA. We raise our glasses to each of you. Brava!