The movie Hidden Figures highlights the historical women of color whose meticulous calculations helped the U.S. catch up in the “space race” and send John Glenn into orbit around Earth. But NASA had many such "hidden figures," and one of the most notable is Engineer and former Rocket Scientist Jacqueline Mims, who was the first African-American civil servant to be certified as a spacecraft ground controller for NASA- Goddard Space Flight Center’s unmanned spacecraft.
Mims developed an early love affair with NASA, becoming an administrative assistant in NASA's co-op program while still in high school. After she earned an Honors Bachelor's degree in Computer Science and Business Administration from Towson University, she worked at NASA as a Aerospace Technologist, programming data telemetry processing systems on board in-orbit satellites, which enabled the world to see graphical images of outer space; and later as a spacecraft controller of the Transition Region and Coronal Explorer (TRACE), a satellite devised to deepen understanding of our dynamic sun's activity. Mims’ last mission at NASA was on the Wide Field Infrared Explorer (WIRE) which attempted to determine how stars are formed.
Mims has also received numerous awards for her Engineering achievements, including the prestigious Trumpet Award and the Government Leadership Award by US Black Engineer. She was named Most Promising Engineer in Government at the Black Engineer of the Year Awards and one of the Top Ten Minority Women in Science and Engineering by the National Technical Association.
Mims decided to accept another challenge by adding Entrepreneur to her list of accomplishments. Mims is CEO and Founder of My Global STEM Academy, a not for profit in Wake County, North Carolina. The mission of My Global STEM Academy is to equip and empower the next generation of STEM leaders around the world to develop and maintain a passion for STEM. Through personalized and hands-on learning programs that focus on science, technology, engineering and math, My Global STEM Academy affords students the experience, skills, and values that will prepare them to excel in the 21st century.
Mims is also a highly sought after Award-Winning International Speaker, Author, Mastermind Trainer and STEM & Women’s Advocate. She has traveled to Guyana and Kenya empowering women and youth to pursue STEM and issuing a call to action for all to dream big and to be willing to perform the work necessary to bring dreams into reality.
Recently, Mims received the Dr. Astell Collins Global Inspiration Award from iChange Nations, the largest culture of honor organization in the world. She is extremely passionate about leaving a legacy that will make our Ancestors proud. Mims is the proud mother of two successful young adult trail blazers, who continue to follow in their Mom’s footsteps to make this world a better place.