Press Release

Chairwoman Johnson and Senator Coons Honor Hidden Figures Congressional Gold Medal Awardees

By SpaceRef Editor
December 10, 2019
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Last night in the U.S. Capitol, Chairwoman Eddie Bernice Johnson (D-TX), U.S. Senator Chris Coons (D-DE), and the Sloan Foundation honored Dr. Christine Darden, Congressional Gold Medal recipient and former NASA mathematician, data analyst, and aeronautical engineer. Katherine Johnson and her family and the families of Dorothy Vaughan and Mary Jackson were also recognized at the event.


The event celebrated the passage of bipartisan legislation, introduced by Chairwoman Johnson and Senator Coons, along with U.S. Representative Frank Lucas (R-OK) and U.S. Senators Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) and Kamala Harris (D-CA), that will award Congressional Gold Medals to Katherine Johnson and Dr. Christine Darden and posthumously award Congressional Gold Medals to Dorothy Vaughan and Mary Jackson. The bill will also award a fifth Congressional Gold Medal to honor all women who contributed to NASA during the Space Race.


“Since the book was published, the phrase ‘hidden figures’ has taken on a life of its own,” said Chairwoman Johnson. “Society is discovering the legacies of ‘hidden figures’ across all fields of work. National recognition of Katherine Johnson, Christine Darden, Dorothy Vaughan, Mary Jackson, and the hundreds of other women mathematicians and engineers working at NASA, of their contributions to the space program, and their inspiring legacies is long overdue.”


“I’m thrilled that we had the opportunity to honor Dr. Christine Darden, Katherine Johnson, Dorothy Vaughan, Mary Jackson, and all the women who contributed to NASA during the Space Race in the Capitol today,” said Senator Coons. “Their accomplishments have had a tremendous impact on the United States’ role as the world leader in science and technological innovation and are an inspiration for women, especially women of color, in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics.”

SpaceRef staff editor.