Charles Bolden

Bolden-at-controls-of-ColumbiaCharles Bolden has logged more than 6,000 hours of flying time in his lengthy aviation career. Bolden enlisted in the Marine Corps after graduation from the Naval Academy and went on to fly more than 100 combat missions in North and South Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia. Bolden graduated from the U.S. Naval Test Pilot School and flew numerous test projects as an ordnance test pilot. In 1980, Bolden was picked as an astronaut candidate. His space career has allowed him to participate in many historic space flights, such as pilot of the Space Shuttle Discovery in 1990, which successfully deployed the Hubble telescope, and as commander of STS-60 in 1994, which marked the first joint U.S./Russian Space Shuttle mission.