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02/08/2010 08:00:00

NASA Administrator Charles Bolden to Be Caltech Commencement Speaker

NASA administrator Charles Bolden (Major General, USMC ret.) will be the speaker for Caltech's 116th annual commencement on June 11 of this year.

General Bolden was appointed the 12th administrator of NASA in July 2009. In this capacity, he leads the NASA team and manages its resources with the goal of best advancing the agency's missions and goals. This includes Caltech's Jet Propulsion Laboratory.

This is General Bolden's second time serving with NASA. His 34-year career with the Marine Corps included 14 years as a member of NASA's Astronaut Office. After becoming an astronaut, he traveled to orbit four times aboard the space shuttle between 1986 and 1994, commanding two of the missions. His flights included deployment of the Hubble Space Telescope and the first joint U.S.-Russian shuttle mission. General Bolden retired from the Marine Corps in 2003. His military decorations include the Defense Superior Service Medal and the Distinguished Flying Cross. In May 2006 he was inducted into the U.S. Astronaut Hall of Fame.

Before his appointment as NASA's chief administrator, General Bolden was the chief executive officer of JACKandPANTHER LLC, a small business providing leadership, military and aerospace consulting, and motivational speaking.

He received his BS in electrical science from the U.S. Naval Academy in 1968 and earned an MS in systems management from USC in 1977.

Caltech's 2009 commencement speaker was U.S. Secretary of Energy Steven Chu.

Written by Jon Weiner