Thomas D. Jones, PhD

Thomas D. Jones, PhD

Astronaut, Aviation Reporting, Inspiration

   Thomas D. Jones, Ph.D. is a former NASA astronaut, scientist, speaker, author, and consultant. He holds a doctorate in planetary sciences, and in more than eleven years with NASA, flew on four space shuttle missions to Earth orbit. On his last flight in 2001, Dr. Jones led three spacewalks to install the centerpiece of the International Space Station, the American Destiny laboratory. He has been privileged to spend fifty-three days working and living in space.
   Tom is a Distinguished Graduate of the Air Force Academy. He piloted B-52D strategic bombers, studied asteroids for NASA, engineered intelligence-gathering systems for the CIA, and helped develop advanced mission concepts to explore the solar system prior to joining NASA’s astronaut corps.
   Tom writes frequently about space exploration and aviation history in magazines such as Air and Space Smithsonian, Aerospace America, and Popular Mechanics. He is the co-author of two books for young adults: Mission: Earth and The Scholastic Encyclopedia of the United States at War. He co-wrote the popular Complete Idiot’s Guide to NASA. Tom’s newest title is Sky Walking: An Astronaut’s Memoir, published in 2006 by Smithsonian Books-Collins. The Wall Street Journal selected Sky Walking as one of the five best books about space.
   Dr. Jones’ awards include the NASA Distinguished Service Medal, four NASA Space Flight Medals, the NASA Exceptional Service Award, the NASA Outstanding Leadership Medal, Phi Beta Kappa, and the Air Force Commendation Medal.
   Tom is a member of the NASA Advisory Council, a group providing expert counsel to the Administrator about the space agency’s direction and challenges. Active in the current debate over the future direction of America’s space exploration program, Tom serves as a regular on-air contributor for Fox News Channel’s spaceflight coverage.

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