Dr. Nancy Grace Roman was the first Chief of Astronomy at National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA). She was the first woman to hold an executive seat at the agency, and has often been described as the ‘mother of the Hubble Space Telescope.’ She passed away at the age of 93.
Dr. Roman was earned her Ph.D. in astronomy from the University of Chicago in 1949. She joined NASA in 1959 as the first Chief of Astronomy in the Office of Space Science at the headquarters of the agency. A position she held for close to two decades until her retirement in 1979.
During her tenure at NASA, Dr. Roman was played a key role in groundbreaking programs such as the Cosmic Background Explorer and the Hubble Space Telescope. She also championed the empowerment of women and advancement of their career through the American Association of University Women.