Organization

National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA)

STS-51-B Destination:
Conduct microgravity experiments

STS-33 Destination:
Deploy classified USA-48 satellite

STS-44 Destination:
DoD satellite deployments

Frederick Drew Gregory was born in Washington DC in 1941.

After receiving his master’s degree in information systems, Gregory joined NASA and in 1977 was selected for his first mission. As a pilot aboard the space shuttle Challenger in 1985, he first proved himself a capable astronaut. He was next given the leadership of the Discovery mission in 1989 and made history as the first black man to command a space shuttle.

Gregory held a variety of posts during his time at NASA including launch support for two of the first space shuttle missions STS-1 and STS-2, Chief of Operational Safety, and Chief of Astronaut training. Gregory also served as a member of the Boards for Orbiter Configuration Control and the Space Shuttle Program Control.

More recently he was promoted from Associate Administrator to Deputy Administrator in 2002 and in 2005 was briefly NASA’s Acting Head Administrator before he retired. By the end of his career, Frederick Drew Gregory reached the rank of Colonel in the United States Air Force.

With over four hundred hours logged in space and extensive experience supporting launches after he was finished flying missions himself he certainly left his mark on the United States space programs.

– Blackpast.org