Bioastronautics/Atmospheric Researcher, Space Suit Technician, and Human Resilience Expert
10:30am EST., Friday February 18th
Presenting Live via Zoom
Bold Era: A New Path to Becoming an Astronaut
At that unique crossroads where human resilience, gallant exploration, and boundless curiosity meet - that is where we uncover solutions for a better human future. It will take pragmatic terrestrial and space technologies, the power of collective action, and human ingenuity to get us there. And we need everyone. The International Institute for Astronautical Sciences (IIAS) is on a mission to do just that. The institute is building the world’s most diverse pipeline of commercial research astronauts. In 2021, the IIAS, comprised of multidisciplinary professionals with experience in the industry, announced its first researcher that will fly to space. As the first IIAS sponsored payload specialist, she represents a paradigm shift. Through rigorous training, research, outreach for underrepresented communities, and contributing to climate resilience and adaptation strategies, the IIAS team is working to enable human-tended research spaceflights for this new era of discovery. In this presentation, learn how the IIAS is proving a sustainable, accessible market for suborbital research spaceflight, offering equity and space for all nations.
Yvette Gonzalez is a humanitarian, bioastronautics/atmospheric researcher, space suit technician, and human resilience expert. With over 22 years of disaster response and international development experience rebuilding communities in war, conflict, natural disasters, and epidemiological outbreaks, Yvette focuses on space technologies that solve Earth challenges. She carries out research at the International Institute for Astronautical Sciences. Yvette leads outreach initiatives connecting marginalized communities to experts, fostering collaborations, and enabling entry points into the industry. As a 2021 World Women Hour Honoree, she is part of a movement elevating 2 million women’s socio-economic milieu through access to capital, community, and STEAM mentorship programs. The movement honors 60 women working towards the Sustainable Development Goals and who have demonstrated leadership, strength, and courage in their commitment to causes or positively impacted others' lives to create a better world. Of Native American and Mexican heritage, she is a member of the American Indian Science and Engineering Society as well as the Society for Advancement of Chicanos/Hispanics and Native Americans in Science, Women in International Security, and The Explorers Club. Yvette is one of 16 extraordinary women invited to join the Explorers Club in 2021 to honor the original 16 female members inducted in 1981.