Vanessa Wyche Makes History As First African American Deputy Director Of NASA’s Johnson Space Center


August 10, 2018


Photo: Bill Stafford/NASA 

Vanessa Wyche is celebrating a historic promotion as she was recently named the first African American director deputy of NASA’s Johnson Space Center (JSC) in Houston. 

Announced in an official press release, “Wyche will assist (Director Mark) Geyer in leading one of NASA’s largest installations, which has nearly 10,000 civil service and contractor employees – including those at White Sands Test Facility in Las Cruces, New Mexico – and a broad range of human spaceflight activities.”


The South Carolina native graduated with a bachelor of science in materials engineering and a master of science in bioengineering from Clemson University. In 1989, Wyche started her NASA career as a project engineer. She then went on to serve in several leadership roles such as assistant center director, associate director of Exploration Integration and Science Directorate, and acting director of Human Exploration Development Support, to name a few. 

“I am incredibly humbled to take on this role at JSC, and also excited to assist Mark with leading the home of human spaceflight,” Wyche said in a statement. “I look forward to working with the talented employees at JSC as we work toward our mission of taking humans farther into the solar system.” 


Geyer added: “Vanessa has a deep background at JSC with significant program experience in almost all of the human spaceflight programs that have been hosted here. She is respected at NASA, has built agency-wide relationships throughout her nearly three-decade career and will serve JSC well as we continue to lead human space exploration in Houston.”

Congratulations, Deputy Director Wyche! We wish you all the best in your new role. 

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