[29], Johnson spent her later years encouraging students to enter the fields of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM). Katherine was assertive, asking to be included in editorial meetings (where no women had gone before). [3][4][5][6] She was the youngest of four children. Their office was labeled as "Colored Computers". Her mother was a teacher and her father was a farmer and janitor. Through WVSC's president, Dr. John W. Davis, she became one of three African-American students,[12] and the only woman, selected to integrate the graduate school after the 1938 United States Supreme Court ruling Missouri ex rel. Katherine had six grandchildren and 11 great-grandchildren. [16] She took on a teaching job at a black public school in Marion, Virginia. Katherine Coleman Goble Johnson (born August 26, 1918) is an American mathematician whose calculations of orbital mechanics as a NASA employee were critical to the success of the first and subsequent U.S. crewed spaceflights. [51] Mattel announced a Barbie doll in Johnson's likeness with a NASA identity badge in 2018. Multiple professors mentored her, including the chemist and mathematician Angie Turner King, who had mentored Coleman throughout high school, and W. W. Schieffelin Claytor, the third African-American to receive a Ph.D. in mathematics. Katherine's father was Joshua Mckinley Coleman, born in White Sulphur Springs on 18 December 1881 to Horace Coleman and Margaret Johnson. In 1958, after NACA was reformulated into the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), Johnson was among the people charged with determining how to get a human into space and back. Katherine Johnson was born in White Sulphur Springs, West Virginia. Creola Katherine Johnson (née Coleman; August 26, 1918 – February 24, 2020) was an American mathematician whose calculations of orbital mechanics as a NASA employee were critical to the success of the first and subsequent U.S. crewed spaceflights. It was staffed by white male engineers. On September 22, 2017, NASA opened the Katherine G. Johnson Computational Research Facility in Hampton, Virginia. For others with the same or similar name, see, Interview with West Virginia State University President Anthony Jenkins on Johnson's studies and career, October 21, 2019, National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics, science, technology, engineering, and mathematics, Katherine Johnson Independent Verification and Validation Facility, List of African-American women in STEM fields, "Katherine Johnson: The Girl Who Loved to Count", "Hidden Figures To Modern Figures: Students See SLS Rocket at Michoud", "Katherine Johnson Dies at 101; Mathematician Broke Barriers at NASA", "The Woman the Mercury Astronauts Couldn't Do Without", "West Virginian of the Year: Katherine G. Johnson", "From Hidden to Modern Figures – Katherine Johnson Biography", "WV native, NASA mathematician to receive Presidential Medal of Freedom", "Katherine G. Johnson – Presidential Honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters", "These Two Famous Alpha Kappa Alpha Members Are Getting Their Own Legos", "Council honors one-time Marion teacher Katherine Johnson of 'Hidden Figures, "Missouri ex rel. Her ability and reputation for accuracy helped to establish confidence in the new technology. "[3] NASA noted her "historical role as one of the first African-American women to work as a NASA scientist. According to an oral history archived by the National Visionary Leadership Project: At first she [Johnson] worked in a pool of women performing math calculations. A bright child with a gift for numbers, she breezed through … Johnson passed away on February 24, 2020. Katherine Johnson was born Creola Katherine Coleman in the small town of White Sulphur Springs, West Virginia. Calculating the trajectories for many NASA missions. On November 6, 2020, a satellite named after her (ÑuSat 15 or "Katherine", COSPAR 2020-079G) was launched into space. She achieved success despite difficulties at home: In 1956, her husband died of a brain tumor. She was brought up together with four siblings. One of NASA's human 'computers,' Katherine Johnson performed the complex calculations that enabled humans to successfully achieve space flight. 0. [35], Johnson died at a retirement home in Newport News on February 24, 2020, at age 101. She is famous for being an African-American mathematician whose precise calculations of orbital mechanics as a NASA employee were important to the success … began working in aeronautics as a "computer" in 1952, and after the formation of NASA, she performed the calculations that sent astronauts into orbit in the early 1960s At age 18, she graduated summa cum laude with degrees in mathematics and French. Dorothy Johnson Vaughan worked as a mathematician on the SCOUT Launch Vehicle Program that sent America’s first satellites into space. 5 6 7. Johnson’s mathematical genius was evident from an early age. From a young age, Johnson enjoyed mathematics and could easily solve mathematical equations. Her story is depicted in the 2016 movie 'Hidden Figures.'. When the mission was aborted, her work on backup procedures and charts helped set a safe path for the crew's return to Earth,[26] creating a one-star observation system that would allow astronauts to determine their location with accuracy. "[1], The highly acclaimed film Hidden Figures, released in December 2016, was based on the non-fiction book of the same title by Margot Lee Shetterly, which was published earlier that year. Johnson was honored with the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2015 and saw her story brought to light through a book and a feature film the following year. Biography. Beginning in the late 1930s, Johnson taught math and French at schools in Virginia and West Virginia. turned into an Oscar-nominated feature film, Hidden Figures (2016), starring actress Taraji P. Henson as Johnson. 99. Who is her husband? You had a mission and you worked on it, and it was important to you to do your job ... and play bridge at lunch." She was the youngest of four children. Born in White Sulphur Springs, West v*rginia in 1918, Katherine Johnson’s intense curiosity and brilliance with numbers vaulted her ahead several grades in school. [12][17], In 1939, after marrying her first husband, James Goble, she left her teaching job and enrolled in a graduate math program. Johnson was born as Creola Katherine Coleman on August 26, 1918, in White Sulphur Springs, West Virginia, to Joylette Roberta (Lowe) and Joshua McKinley Coleman. We strive for accuracy and fairness. ", "Katherine Johnson, real-life subject of 'Hidden Figures' receives standing ovation at Oscars", "Q&A: Our interview with Katherine G. Johnson, the real-life mathematician who inspired 'Hidden Figures, Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum, "William and Mary commencement sends graduates out on new adventure", "West Virginia State University to Honor Katherine Johnson with Statue, Scholarship", "Katherine Johnson to be included in Barbie 'Inspiring Women' series", "Inaugural Inductees Into Government Hall of Fame Unveiled", "NASA Dedicates Building To Hidden Figures Heroine Katherine Johnson", "NASA Honors 'Hidden Figure' Katherine Johnson", "Bethel School District names new school after pioneering black NASA mathematician Katherine Johnson", "Live, Learn, Pursue Passion – NASA Mathematician preps Class of 2006 to find its mission", "MLK Event to Feature 'Hidden Figures' Author Margot Lee Shetterly", National Center for Women & Information Technology, "Obama honoring Spielberg, Streisand and more with medal of freedom", "Katherine Johnson to receive the ASP's new Arthur B.C. West Virginia state college. [50] In August 2018, West Virginia State University established a STEM scholarship in honor of Johnson and erected a life-size statue of her on campus. The facility officially opened its doors on September 22, 2017. Johnson continued to serve as a key asset for NASA, helping to develop its Space Shuttle program and Earth Resources Satellite, until her retirement in 1986. [4][8], Johnson showed strong mathematical abilities from an early age. Margot Lee Shetterly's 2016 book Hidden Figures: The American Dream and the Untold Story of the Black Women Who Helped Win the Space Race celebrated the little-known story of Johnson and her fellow African American computers. *There are 2 UK authors named Catherine Johnson, born 1957 and 1962. [45] In a 2016 video NASA stated, "Her calculations proved as critical to the success of the Apollo Moon landing program and the start of the Space Shuttle program, as they did to those first steps on the country's journey into space. Johnson was honored with an array of awards for her groundbreaking work. The three leading ladies did an excellent job portraying us. Her mother was a teacher and her father was a lumberman, farmer, and handyman, and worked at the Greenbrier Hotel. The first jobs she found were in teaching. Her father mostly worked as a handyman at the Greenbrier Hotel, while her mother was a teacher. In 2015, President Barack Obama awarded Johnson the Presidential Medal of Freedom. Save. Gaines v. Canada 305 U.S. 337 (1938)", "She Was a Computer When Computers Wore Skirts", "On Being a Black Female Math Whiz During the Space Race", "Katherine Johnson Interview: NASA's Human Computer", "The Black Female Mathematicians Who Sent Astronauts to Space", "The unbelievable life of the forgotten genius who turned Americans' space dreams into reality", "Katherine Johnson, Legendary Mathematician and Inspiration for the Upcoming Film Hidden Figures, Turns 98", "Mathematics pioneer Katherine Johnson, portrayed in 'Hidden Figures,' dies at 101", "The Untold History of Women in Science and Technology: Katherine Johnson", "Real life 'Hidden Figures' mathematician is longtime Presbyterian", "Local hero, NASA mathematician Katherine Johnson dies at 101", "Our @NASA family is sad to learn the news that Katherine Johnson passed away this morning at 101 years old. [4], From 1953 to 1958, Johnson worked as a computer,[19] analyzing topics such as gust alleviation for aircraft. K - 3rd grade . [54] NASA renamed the Independent Verification and Validation Facility, in Fairmont, West Virginia, to the Katherine Johnson Independent Verification and Validation Facility on February 22, 2019. I said, 'Let me do it. [26] In 1961, her work helped to ensure that Alan Shepard's Freedom 7 Mercury capsule would be found quickly after landing, using the accurate trajectory that had been established. We were concerned about them getting back. Johnson enrolled at West Virginia State College (now West Virginia State University) in Institute, West Virginia, where she encountered a hands-on faculty. She is credited for being an instigator in the Stonewall riots. Their main job was to read the data from the black boxes of planes and carry out other precise mathematical tasks. BIOGRAPHY: Katherine Johnson, Space Scientist Skip to entry content Katherine was born in on 26 August 1918 in White Sulphur Springs, West Virginia where her father Joshua was a farmer, and her mother Joylette was a teacher. Katherine Johnson’s Childhood and Love for Numbers Katherine Johnson (Image Source) Katherine Johnson was born as the youngest daughter of Joshua and Joylette Coleman on August 26, 1918, in White Sulphur Springs. She calculated the trajectory for the May 5, 1961 space flight of Alan Shepard, the first American in space. Answer. This school was on the campus of West Virginia State College (WVSC). [8][18], Johnson decided on a career as a research mathematician, although this was a difficult field for African Americans and women to enter. "Early on, when they said they wanted the capsule to come down at a certain place, they were trying to compute when it should start. Edit. West Virginia. NACA, NASA. [43] At the ceremony, deputy director Lewin said this about Johnson: "Millions of people around the world watched Shepard's flight, but what they didn't know at the time was that the calculations that got him into space and safely home were done by today's guest of honor, Katherine Johnson". [1][24][25] Biography.com states these were "far more difficult calculations, to account for the gravitational pulls of celestial bodies". She finished schooling at a very early age. 2500589_88202. NASA. What year was she born? [36][3] Following her death, Jim Bridenstine, NASA's administrator, described her as "an American hero" and stated that "her pioneering legacy will never be forgotten. Katherine, the youngest child of Joshua and Joylette Coleman, was born on 26 August 1918, in White Sulphur Springs, West Virginia. She made important contributions to the United States space program during her career at the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA). Then one day, Katherine (and a colleague) were temporarily assigned to help the all-male flight research team. In 1959, Katherine married James A. Her calculations were also essential to the beginning of the Space Shuttle program, and she worked on plans for a mission to Mars. [25] Appearing alongside Henson at the 89th Academy Awards, Johnson received a standing ovation from the audience. She excelled in mathematics from an early age,... See full answer below. It follows Johnson and other female African-American mathematicians (Mary Jackson and Dorothy Vaughan) who worked at NASA. Colonel James Johnson. "[28] Later in her career, Johnson worked on the Space Shuttle program, the Earth Resources Satellite,[1][26] and on plans for a mission to Mars. President Barack Obama presented her with the Presidential Medal of Freedom, one of 17 Americans so honored on November 24, 2015. “I can’t imagine a better tribute to Mrs. Johnson’s character and accomplishments than this building that will bear her name.”, Johnson's humble response to a building named after her was said with a laugh: “You want my honest answer? Katherine Johnson, née Katherine Coleman, also known as (1939–56) Katherine Goble, (born August 26, 1918, White Sulphur Springs, West Virginia, U.S.—died February 24, 2020), American mathematician who calculated and analyzed the flight paths of many spacecraft during her more than three decades with the U.S. space program. Although her town didn’t offer classes for African Americans after that point, her father, Joshua, drove the family 120 miles to Institute, West Virginia, where they lived while she attended high school. [1][26] During the Moon landing, Johnson was at a meeting in the Pocono Mountains. Jack Johnson, nicknamed "the Galveston Giant," was the first African American world heavyweight boxing champion. [10] The family split their time between Institute during the school year and White Sulphur Springs in the summer. I think they’re crazy.”, Her trailblazing contributions were celebrated at the dedication ceremony where Margot Lee Shetterly, the author of Hidden Figures and keynote speaker, said of the "human computers": “We are living in a present that they willed into existence with their pencils, their slide rules, their mechanical calculating machines — and, of course, their brilliant minds. 0. She added that, in a time where computing was "women's work" and engineering was left to men, "it really does have to do with us over the course of time sort of not valuing that work that was done by women, however necessary, as much as we might. Born in 1918, Katherine Johnson was one of the first Black students to integrate West Virginia’s graduate schools before becoming a NASA mathematician, where … Biography Katherine Johnson was given the name Katherine Coleman on her birth. In 1952, Johnson learned that the National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics (NACA) was hiring African American women to serve as "computers;" namely, people who performed and checked calculations for technological developments. www.nasa.gov/content/katherine-johnson-biography", "Black history... Katherine G Johnson (1918 – retired), "Katherine G. Johnson: Physicist, Space Scientist, Mathematician", "Peninsula Officials: Regions Disaster-Ready", "Katherine G. Johnson Computational Research Facility Ribbon Cutting", "NASA Dedicates Facility to Mathematician, Presidential Medal Winner", "Katherine Johnson at NASA Langley Research Center", "BBC 100 Women 2016: Who is on the list? [48], Science writer Maia Weinstock developed a prototype Lego for Women of NASA in 2016 and included Johnson; she declined to have her likeness printed on the final product. ... Creola Katherine Coleman was born on … "[47] In a 2016 episode of the NBC series Timeless, titled "Space Race", the mathematician is portrayed by Nadine Ellis. In a 2010 interview, Johnson recalled, "Everybody was concerned about them getting there. Katherine has referred to the women in the pool as virtual "computers who wore skirts". She 1918. [1] During her 35-year career at NASA and its predecessor, she earned a reputation for mastering complex manual calculations and helped pioneer the use of computers to perform the tasks. 4 hours ago. ", She said to Johnson: "Your work changed our history and your history has changed our future. At a family gathering in 1952, a relative mentioned that the National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics (NACA) was hiring mathematicians. The court ruled that states that provided public higher education to white students also had to provide it to black students, to be satisfied either by establishing black colleges and universities or by admitting black students to previously white-only universities. © 2020 Biography and the Biography logo are registered trademarks of A&E Television Networks, LLC. [30], Katherine and James Francis Goble had three daughters: Constance, Joylette, and Katherine. The following year she remarried, to decorated Navy and Army officer James A. Johnson. In an interview with WHRO-TV, Johnson stated that she "didn't feel the segregation at NASA, because everybody there was doing research. Katherine had three other siblings, and she was the youngest of the lot. Katherine Johnson, Legendary Mathematician and Inspiration for the Upcoming Film Hidden Figures, Turns 98 this link is to an external site that may or may not meet accessibility guidelines. Katherine Johnson was born Katherine Goble in White Sulphur Springs, West Virginia on August 26, 1918. US scientist Katherine Johnson is 99 years old (born Katherine Coleman, August 26, 1918). “They didn’t ask questions or take the task any further. The family lived in Newport News, Virginia, from 1953. Among them are the 1967 NASA Lunar Orbiter Spacecraft and Operations team award, and the James died of an inoperable brain tumor in 1956 and, three years later, Katherine married James A. Claytor added new mathematics courses just for Johnson. Margot Lee Shetterly's 2016 book Hidden Figures: The American Dream and the Untold Story of the Black Women Who Helped Win the Space Race celebrated the little-known story of Johnson and her fellow African American computers. Mathematician and computer scientist Katherine Johnson was born on August 26, 1918 in White Sulphur Springs, West Virginia to Joylette and Joshua Coleman. Yet, the job wasn't considered complete until Johnson was summoned to check the work of the machines, providing the go-ahead to propel John Glenn into successful orbit in 1962. " As a result, the task of plotting the path for Alan Shepard's 1961 journey to space, the first in American history, fell on her shoulders. Her work helped send astronauts to the Moon. West Virginia University. [3][31][32] Johnson, who had six grandchildren and 11 great-grandchildren, lived in Hampton, Virginia. In 1939, Johnson married James Francis Goble, with whom she had three daughters: Joylette, Katherine and Constance. [20] In keeping with state racial segregation laws, and federal workplace segregation introduced under President Woodrow Wilson in the early 20th century, Johnson and the other African-American women in the computing pool were required to work, eat, and use restrooms that were separate from those of their white peers. In 2016, she was presented with the Silver Snoopy Award by NASA astronaut Leland D. Melvin and a NASA Group Achievement Award. Katherine Johnson DRAFT. [1] She also calculated the launch window for his 1961 Mercury mission. Taraji P. Henson plays Johnson in the film. I graduated from nursing school in 2007, pregnant with our first daughter, so I decided to start my career after she was born as a childbirth educator and later became a Doula in 2012. Johnson applied, and the following year she was accepted for a position at Langley Research Center in Hampton, Virginia. [4][38] Her social influence as a pioneer in space science and computing is demonstrated by the honors she received and her status as a role model for a life in science. Katherine Johnson is an American mathematician . Lyndon B. Johnson was elected vice president of the United States in 1960 and became the 36th president in 1963, following the assassination of John F. Kennedy. She performed calculations for the historic 1969 Apollo 11 trip to the moon, and the following year, when Apollo 13 experienced a malfunction in space, her contributions to contingency procedures helped ensure its safe return. I was working with Ted Skopinski and he wanted to leave and go to Houston ... but Henry Pearson, our supervisor – he was not a fan of women – kept pushing him to finish the report we were working on. The following year, Johnson became one of three students to desegregate West Virginia University's graduate school in Morgantown. Johnson was born Katherine Coleman on August 26, 1918, in White Sulphur Springs, West Virginia. Her father, Joshua Coleman was also a self-taught mathematician who had took on jobs as a lumberjack and he farmed. Her mother, Joylette, was a teacher. Born in White Sulphur Springs, West v*rginia in 1918, Katherine Johnson’s intense curiosity and brilliance with numbers vaulted her ahead several grades in school. [34], She was a member of Carver Memorial Presbyterian Church for 50 years. What organization did she work for? [49] On May 12, 2018, she was awarded an honorary doctorate by the College of William & Mary. "use strict";(function(){var insertion=document.getElementById("citation-access-date");var date=new Date().toLocaleDateString(undefined,{month:"long",day:"numeric",year:"numeric"});insertion.parentElement.replaceChild(document.createTextNode(date),insertion)})(); Subscribe to the Biography newsletter to receive stories about the people who shaped our world and the stories that shaped their lives. The next challenge was to send a man in orbit around Earth. [11], After graduating from high school at 14, Johnson enrolled at West Virginia State, a historically black college. Johnson was born as Creola Katherine Coleman on August 26, 1918, in White Sulphur Springs, West Virginia, to Joylette Roberta (Lowe) and Joshua McKinley Coleman. [23] She plotted backup navigation charts for astronauts in case of electronic failures. Katherine Coleman Goble Johnson (August 26, 1918 – February 24, 2020) was an African American physicist and mathematician. While the racial and gender barriers were always there, Katherine says she ignored them. Preview this quiz on Quizizz. Katherine Johnson was born on August 26, 1918 to Joshua and Joylette Coleman in White Sulphur Springs, West Virginia. [42] Johnson attended this event, which also marked the 55th anniversary of astronaut Alan Shepard's historic rocket launch and splashdown, a success Johnson helped achieve. In the early days of NASA women were not allowed to put their names on the reports – no woman in my division had had her name on a report. National Technical Association’s designation as its 1997 Mathematician of the Year. Wiki User ... Katherine G. JOhnson did not die yet she is still alive in washington D.C. by 2500589_88202. Lonnie G. Johnson is a former Air Force and NASA engineer who invented the massively popular Super Soaker water gun. Although the installation was desegregated,[20] forms of discrimination were still pervasive. In 1991, he announced that he had tested positive for HIV, the virus that causes AIDS. Where was Katherine Johnson Born? Johnson is her married name (from her second husband) but, for the sake of simplicity, we will use the name Katherine up to the point when she married for the second time. The space agency noted her "historical role as one of the first African-American women to work as a NASA scientist".[2]. 83% average accuracy. Capitol College, Virginia's Old Dominion University and West Virginia University. Employer. "[27], Johnson later worked directly with digital computers. Johnson's work included calculating trajectories, launch windows, and emergency return paths for Project Mercury spaceflights, including those for astronauts Alan Shepard, the first American in space, and John Glenn, the first American in orbit, and rendezvous paths for the Apollo Lunar Module and command module on flights to the Moon. NACA disbanded the colored computing pool in 1958 when the agency was superseded by NASA, which adopted digital computers. After only two weeks, Johnson was transferred from the African American computing pool to Langley's flight research division, where she talked her way into meetings and earned additional responsibilities. Originally assigned to the West Area Computers section supervised by mathematician Dorothy Vaughan, Johnson was reassigned to the Guidance and Control Division of Langley's Flight Research Division. A year later, in September 2017, 99-year-old Johnson was honored by NASA, with the dedication of a new research building which is named after her — the Katherine G. Johnson Computational Research Facility. When was Katherine g Johnson born and where and at? Asked by Wiki User. Katherine Johnson made the most of limited educational opportunities for African Americans, graduating from college at age 18. The wife of U.S. President Lyndon B. Johnson, Lady Bird Johnson served as first lady from 1963 to 1969. Johnson not only proved adept at her calculations, she displayed a curiosity and assertiveness that caught her superiors by surprise. "[2], On May 5, 2016, a new 40,000-square-foot (3,700 m2) building was named the "Katherine G. Johnson Computational Research Facility" and formally dedicated at the agency's Langley Research Center in Hampton, Virginia. Katherine Johnson, part of a small group of African-American women mathematicians who did crucial work at NASA, in 1966. and to the moon in 1969. She passed away on February 24, 2020, at the age of 101. Katherine Coleman Goble Johnson was born on August 26, 1918 in White Sulphur Springs, West Virginia. ... Johnson was born in White Sulphur Springs, West Virginia, in 1918. She died on Feb. 24, 2020. She was portrayed by Taraji P. Henson as a lead character in the 2016 film Hidden Figures. I knew it was there, but I didn't feel it."[21]. Johnson accepted a job offer from the agency in June 1953.[4]. While the work of electronic computers took on increased importance at NASA, Johnson remained highly valuable for her unwavering accuracy. "Jim" Johnson, a United States Army officer and veteran of the Korean War; the pair were married for 60 years until his death in March 2019 at the age of 93. 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[ 44 ], Katherine ( and a colleague ) were temporarily assigned to help the all-male flight Research.! Discrimination were still pervasive home: in 1956 and, three years later, Katherine and James Francis Goble three! In STEM screen watching the first President of the world 's best basketball players for more than a decade interview. Transgender woman and revolutionary LGBTQ rights activist 11 ], after graduating from College at age,... Year and White Sulphur Springs, West Virginia in orbit around Earth that caught superiors. People she had done the work anyway. 28 ], Johnson worked on the SCOUT launch Vehicle that. 25 ] Appearing alongside Henson at the National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics ( NACA was... 'S graduate school at 14, Johnson received a standing ovation from the in... The Katherine G. Johnson did not die yet she is credited for being an instigator in 2016! 1881 to Horace Coleman and Margaret Johnson she was the youngest of four children February 24,,. 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