Decades of dedication: Bob Cabana set to retire from NASA

NASA Associate Administrator Bob Cabana during a NASA town hall meeting in May 2023 at the agency's headquarters in Washington. Credit: Keegan Barber / NASA

NASA Affiliate Administrator Bob Cabana throughout a NASA city corridor assembly in Might 2023 on the company’s headquarters in Washington. Credit score: Keegan Barber / NASA

NASA Affiliate Administrator and former astronaut Bob Cabana is retiring efficient Dec. 31 after an illustrious 38-year profession with the house company.

Cabana is the third-highest rating civil servant on the company, behind solely NASA Administrator Invoice Nelson and Deputy Administrator Pam Melroy. He has been a key determine in shaping NASA’s endeavors and accomplishments.

“Bob is likely one of the best leaders I’ve ever recognized. I’ve been lucky to know him for many years, and I couldn’t be prouder to have had such a terrific colleague and buddy all through the years,” Administrator Nelson stated in a Nov. 13 company information launch asserting Cabana’s retirement. “Bob is an instance of the American grit, ardour, and excellence which are woven into the material of our nation. Pam and I are eternally grateful for the years of service and constructive affect he has had on the USA, NASA, and house exploration and need him all the very best on his upcoming retirement.”

Cabana’s journey with NASA started in June 1985 when he was chosen as an astronaut, finishing his coaching in 1986. Over the course of his profession, he flew 4 shuttle missions, twice serving as commander. Notable missions embody being the pilot aboard house shuttle Discovery’s STS-41 mission in October 1990, which deployed the Ulysses photo voltaic probe, and Discovery’s STS-53 mission in December 1992, which was a Division of Protection mission that carried a categorised major payload.

In July 1994, he served as commander of STS-65 aboard house shuttle Columbia, which launched the second Worldwide Microgravity Laboratory mission.

Lastly, he was commander of Endeavour’s STS-88 mission in December 1998, which was the primary meeting flight for the nascent Worldwide House Station. That mission took the primary U.S. module, the Unity node, to house to attach with the Zarya module, which was the primary Russian element orbited for the challenge.

Bob Cabana, left, and Russian cosmonaut Sergei Krikalev inside the pressurized mating adapter connecting Unity with Zarya during the STS-88 mission in 1998. They were the first two people to venture inside the ISS following the modules' connection. Credit: NASA

Bob Cabana, left, and Russian cosmonaut Sergei Krikalev contained in the pressurized mating adapter connecting Unity with Zarya throughout the STS-88 mission in 1998. They have been the primary two folks to enterprise contained in the ISS following the modules’ connection. Credit score: NASA

The STS-88 mission marked the primary of 37 house shuttle flights to the house station via 2011 to assemble, keep and resupply the orbiting laboratory. The orbiters have been retired in 2011, however the ISS program continued unimpeded and is presently serviced by a fleet of worldwide and business spacecraft. The outpost has additionally remained constantly staffed since November 2000 by astronauts and cosmonauts from all over the world and is anticipated to stay in low Earth orbit via at the least 2030.

After spending 38 days in house over his 4 house missions, Cabana held varied management roles inside NASA. He served because the deputy director of Johnson House Heart in Houston and later because the director of Stennis House Heart in Mississippi in October 2007. That was adopted a 12 months later by his appointment because the director of Kennedy House Heart in 2008.

Throughout his greater than a decade-long tenure at KSC, Cabana oversaw the transition of the power right into a multi-user spaceport, supporting a variety of house exploration actions, together with the primary crewed flight to the ISS aboard SpaceX’s Crew Dragon in 2020, the primary human spaceflight to orbit from U.S. soil because the retirement of the house shuttles.

Cabana’s outstanding profession reached its pinnacle when he was appointed because the affiliate administrator of NASA in Might 2021. On this function, he led NASA’s 10 heart administrators and the mission directorate affiliate directors at NASA headquarters in Washington, D.C., contributing considerably to the company’s strategic course in its Moon to Mars plans.

Earlier than becoming a member of NASA, Cabana had a distinguished navy profession, graduating from the Naval Academy in 1971 with a bachelor’s diploma in arithmetic. He was a naval aviator and graduated with distinction from the Naval Check Pilot College in 1981, logging over 7,000 hours in additional than 50 totally different plane. Cabana retired as a colonel from the U.S. Marine Corps in September 2000.

In recognition of his contributions to house exploration, Cabana was inducted into the Astronaut Corridor of Fame in 2008.

“Main the distinctive folks at NASA who discover the universe for the good thing about humanity has been a terrific honor,” Cabana stated. “From flying in house to guiding groups throughout the company in attaining NASA’s mission, I’m grateful for an unbelievable profession at NASA and within the house business, and grateful for all of the enriching friendships made all through this journey. I’ve been blessed to be a part of such an incredible crew these final 38 years and serving as affiliate administrator alongside Invoice and Pam has been a spotlight.”

The STS-88 mission post-flight presentation. Video courtesy of NASA, AI upscale courtesy of Retro House HD

Tagged: Affiliate Administrator Bob Cabana Kennedy House Heart Lead Tales NASA House Shuttle STS-88

Derek Richardson

Derek Richardson has a level in mass media, with an emphasis in modern journalism, from Washburn College in Topeka, Kansas. Whereas at Washburn, he was the managing editor of the coed run newspaper, the Washburn Evaluation. He additionally has an internet site about human spaceflight referred to as Orbital Velocity. Yow will discover him on twitter @TheSpaceWriter.

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