Bonnie Jeanne Dunbar was born the small eastern Washington city of in Sunnyside, but decided that the stars were the limit. Dunbar became a NASA astronaut in 1981. She spent 50 days in space. She flew on five space flights—on three of which she served as mission specialist and as Payload Commander on the other two. Her work included evaluating bone strength and fracture toughness in space. After she retired from NASA, she served as the CEO of Seattle’s led the University of Houston’s Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) Center, and taught aerospace engineering at Texas A&M University. She currently serves as the school’s director of the Institute for Engineering and Education and Innovation (IEEI). Dunbar received several acknowledgements including the NASA Exceptional Service Medal and the NASA Exceptional Achievement Medal. In 2000, Dunbar became one of the five women honored by Women in Technology International.
Contributed by Amee Bahr