Chris Hadfield

Chris Hadfield recently spent 144 days serving as commander of the International Space Station. As he and his crew conducted a record number of scientific experiments and completed a risky emergency spacewalk, Hadfield also gained worldwide acclaim for his stunning photographs, videos, and commentary from space, and he has been credited with single-handedly reinvigorating interest in the space program. The top graduate of the U.S. Air Force Test Pilot School in 1988 and U.S. Navy Test Pilot of the Year in 1991, Hadfield was selected to be an astronaut in 1992. He was capsule communicator for 25 Shuttle launches and served as director of NASA operations in Star City, Russia, from 2001 to 2003; chief of robotics at Houston’s Johnson Space Center from 2003 to 2006; and chief of ISS operations in the Astronaut Office from 2006 to 2008. He is also a fully qualified flight-engineer cosmonaut, is fluent in Russian, and is designated a “specialist” on all Space Station systems, meaning that he has earned the highest qualification level possible for every imaginable task on board. In June 2013, after more than two decades as an astronaut, Hadfield announced his retirement.