American biochemistry researcher, retired NASA astronaut, and former NASA Chief Astronaut, Dr. Whitson received a B.S. in biology and chemistry from Iowa Wesleyan College and a Doctorate in Biochemistry from Rice University. Dr. Whitson began her career with NASA in 1989, holding various titles during her 29-year career. In 2002, Dr. Whitson embarked on her first space mission, an extended stay aboard the International Space Station as a member of Expedition 5. In 2016, Dr. Whitson flew on Expedition 50/51 and participated in four spacewalks, bringing her career total to ten. With a total of 665 days in space across all missions, Dr. Whitson holds the U.S. record, placing eighth on the all-time space endurance list.