Dorothy (Dottie) Metcalf-Lindenburger, Retired NASA Astronaut

Available for interaction with students and visitors:
Friday, May 24, 10:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. | STEM Teaching and Learning Facility, 3rd Floor

Dorothy (Dottie) Metcalf-Lindenburger

Dottie Metcalf-Lindenburger grew up along the Front Range in Colorado. She graduated from Fort Collins High School, where she ran on two state championship cross-country teams and placed second as a Science Olympiad team member.

A scholar athlete, she ran cross-country and track and earned her B.A. in geology from Whitman College. She went on to get a teaching certificate from Central Washington University, and she taught earth science and astronomy for five years at Hudson’s Bay High School in Vancouver, WA. In addition to teaching, she coached cross-country and Science Olympiad.

In June 2004, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) selected her to join the Astronaut Corps. After several years of training, she flew as a mission specialist on the STS-131 crew, an International Space Station (ISS) resupply mission. Dottie served as Mission Specialist 2 (also known as the flight engineer), a robotic arm operator, the intra-vehicular crew member (the inside coordinator of the spacewalks), and a transfer crew member (helping move six tons of hardware and equipment). The mission lasted 15 days.

During June 2012, Dottie commanded the NASA Extreme Environment Mission Operation (NEEMO) in the Aquarius Reef Habitat off the Florida coast. The 16th underwater mission sought to develop techniques for working with an asteroid while operating under a 100-second time delay.

In June 2014, Dottie retired from the Astronaut Corps and returned to the Pacific Northwest with her family. She earned her M.S. in applied geology at the University of Washington and worked as a geologist for Geosyntec Consultants. In 2023, Dottie founded her own business, Dottie ML, LLC. She is a professional speaker, continuing to promote science, technology, engineering, arts, and mathematics (STEAM) education. She also volunteers as a board member for Challenger Center, the Seattle Museum of Flight, and the Presidential Advisory Board for Whitman College.