“Leadership provides an ability to influence
the things that you care most about”
– Ellen Ochoa

First Hispanic Female
in Space

“To me it wasn’t just about being in space. It was about being part of a team. It was about we have a goal to accomplish … about scientific discovery, about learning what humans can do in space, about bringing value to country.”
– Ellen Ochoa

Ellen’s first bilingual children’s book in a series introducing STEM/STEAM topics is now available! Get We Are All Scientists/Todos Somos Científicos from the publishers Lil’ Libros or anywhere books are sold.


“Education is what allows you to stand out. It was the key to my selection as an astronaut,
and continuing to learn at every step of the way has brought me to new heights.”
– Ellen Ochoa

Over 300 presentations encouraging females
and minorities to pursue technical fields.

“What we do at NASA is very challenging, and we need the best and brightest from all backgrounds to work together to come up with solutions and new ideas.”
– Ellen Ochoa


Ellen Ochoa became the first Hispanic female to go to space when she served on a nine-day mission aboard Space Shuttle Discovery in 1993. She flew a total of 4 missions, serving as the flight engineer (during launch, rendezvous and entry phases of each mission), as robotic arm operator and as lead for science experiments. In total, she spent nearly 1,000 hours in space from 1993 to 2002.


NASA Leader

In 2013, Ellen Ochoa became the 11th director of the NASA Johnson Space Center in Houston. She was the second female to hold this prestigious position, and the first Latina. She guided more than 10,000 civil servants and contractors at the NASA Johnson Space Center to adopt a lean, agile, adaptive-to-change approach to advancing human space exploration, while also launching initiatives designed to expand diversity and inclusion. She retired from NASA in 2018 after a 30-year career with the agency.

Executive Guidance

Tapping into years of experience in strategic development, risk management and governance acquired during her NASA career, Ellen provides executive guidance to organizations including corporate boards and the National Science Board.

Trailblazing Advocate

Ellen strives to inspire women and minorities to pursue STEM fields and continue humanity’s quest to unearth new discoveries. She has six schools named after her, has been profiled in numerous K-8 textbooks and websites, and shared her experiences in more than 300 presentations to audiences around the world.