February 3

Guion “Guy” Bluford was the African American in space. He launched into history on the Challenger space shuttle in August 1983. He went to space on four separate space missions. He also worked with the Columbia Accident Investigation Board to help determine the cause of the shuttle Columbia breaking up in 2003.  More on him here on space.com, “Guion Bluford.”

The first African American woman in space was Dr. Mae Carol Jemison. Her first space launch was aboard the Space Shuttle Endeavor on September 12, 1992. She’s a physician, engineer, and astronaut. And dancer! And holds nine honorary doctorates.  An amazing role model. More on her here on biography.com, “Mae C. Jemison.”

And not to be outdone, but my favorite African American in space, Nichelle Nichols, from Star Trek! Ok, I know she didn’t really go into space, but she was one half of the first interracial kiss on TV.  Nichelle Nichols Interview on the First Interracial Kiss on TV