Amelia Earhart Aerospace Summit Speakers

Kathleen Howell

Hsu Lo Distinguished Professor of Aeronautics and Astronautics, Purdue University

Kathleen Howell is the Hsu Lo Distinguished Professor of Aeronautics and Astronautics at Purdue University, where she maintains an active research program with a focus on orbit mechanics, spacecraft dynamics and trajectory optimization.

Howell has made pioneering contributions in celestial mechanics and astrodynamics, and her research has had a major impact on numerous past and ongoing NASA and international space flight missions, including Artemis, Genesis and Cassini.

Her accomplishments have been widely recognized through many awards, including the Dirk Brouwer Award from the American Astronautical Society and Purdue’s Morrill Award, the highest honor given to a member of Purdue's faculty. She is a member of the International Academy of Astronautics and the National Academy of Engineering.

Howell earned her BS degree in aerospace engineering from Iowa State University and her MS and PhD degrees in aeronautical and astronautical sciences from Stanford University.

Sammie Morris

Professor of Library Science and Head of Archives and Special Collections
University Archivist/Director, Karnes Research Center, Purdue University Libraries

Sammie L. Morris, professor and Head of Archives and Special Collections at Purdue University, works closely with the Amelia Earhart collections at Purdue and frequently gives talks on Earhart’s relationship to Purdue University. Her article on Amelia Earhart’s poetry shed light on how Earhart’s creative writing captured aspects of her personality that were often not visible to the public.

Morris is a member of the Academy of Certified Archivists, Society of American Archivists, and Midwest Archives Conference and is a past president of the Society of American Archivists.

She has a master’s degree in Library and Information Science concentrating on archival enterprise, from University of Texas at Austin and a BA degree in English Literature from Louisiana Scholars’ College.

Beth Moses

Chief Astronaut Instructor, Virgin Galactic

Beth Moses is the first female to fly to space on a commercial vehicle and earned her Commercial Astronaut Wings from the Federal Aviation Administration in April 2019. She is the chief astronaut instructor at Virgin Galactic.

Moses was formerly the extravehicular system manager for the International Space Station at NASA.

Moses received her bachelor’s and master’s degrees in aeronautical and astronautical engineering from Purdue. As a student, she was awarded the National Science Foundation’s Microgravity Research Award to conduct materials research in parabolic flight. She is the recipient of Chicago’s Adler Planetarium annual Women in Space Science Award and a Google Science Fair judge. She was honored as an Outstanding Aerospace Engineer by AAE in 2018.

Honorable Sue C. Payton

President, SCI Aerospace Inc.

Change agent, acquisition expert, innovative industry leader and public servant, Sue Payton has over 37 years of continued success working in senior industry and government positions with military services, defense agencies, coalition partners, Joint Chiefs of Staff, Office of the Secretary of Defense, Intelligence Community, Congress, Universities and the media.

The former Assistant Secretary of the Air Force for Acquisition and former Deputy Under Secretary of Defense currently is president at SCI Aerospace Inc. She advises business executives in areas of financial audit scope and compliance; corporate governance principles and policies; standards of conduct; strategic business planning, including R&D; and game changing technology transition; acquisition and logistics approaches to meet national security needs; resource allocations and operating execution

She is a graduate of Eastern Illinois University, University of Southern California and Nova Southeastern University.