Mike Massimino Profile Photo

Mike Massimino

Keynote Speaker

Former NASA Astronaut, NY Times Bestselling Author; Media & TV Personality; Columbia University Professor

The first person to tweet from space and a four-time spacewalker on two missions to the Hubble Space Telescope, including the final Hubble servicing mission, which has been called the most dangerous and complex mission in space shuttle history, Mike Massimino uses humor and his unique storytelling ability to inspire audiences to identify the passion in their work, to use teamwork and innovation to solve problems, to provide leadership in the face of adversity, and to never give up when pursuing a goal.

Request Availability

Mike Massimino'S SPEAKING FEE $25K - $40K

Mike Massimino Profile Photo

Mike Massimino'S SPEAKING FEE $25K - $40K

Mike Massimino is a former NASA Astronaut, a New York Times bestselling author, a Columbia University engineering professor, and an advisor at The Intrepid Sea, Air and Space Museum. A veteran of two space shuttle missions and four spacewalks, Massimino was the first person to tweet from space, holds the team record for the most spacewalking time on a single space shuttle mission, and successfully completed the most complicated spacewalk ever attempted to repair the Hubble Space Telescope. Massimino persisted through three rejections over 7 years on his way to becoming an astronaut, including overcoming a medical disqualification by training his eyes and brain to see better. He has had a recurring role as himself on the CBS comedy “The Big Bang Theory,” is the host for the Science Channel Series “The Planets and Beyond,” was featured in National Geographic Television’s “One Strange Rock,” is a frequent expert guest on news programs and late night television (including Good Morning America, The Today Show, CNN, Fox News Channel, MSNBC, CNBC, and The Late Show with David Letterman), and has been called the real-life astronaut who inspired George Clooney’s role in the movie “Gravity.” He lives in New York City.

Featured Videos

Mike Massimino Profile Photo
Mike Massimino
Introducing Mike Massimino
Mike Massimino Profile Photo
Mike Massimino
Mike Massimino – Media Highlights
Mike Massimino Profile Photo
Mike Massimino
Mike Massimino on Water Survival
Mike Massimino Profile Photo
Mike Massimino
Mike Massimino on Recognizing the Purpose in Your Work
Mike Massimino Profile Photo
Mike Massimino
Mike Massimino on An Astronaut’s View of Space
Mike Massimino Profile Photo
Mike Massimino
Mike Massimino on Following Dreams and Setting Goals
Mike Massimino Profile Photo
Mike Massimino
Mike Massimino on Teamwork and Never Giving Up

Mike Massimino’s Speech Topics

  • Following Dreams, Setting Goals, and Never Giving Up

    Mike’s dream of becoming an astronaut began when he was six years old watching television as Neil Armstrong took the first steps on the moon. The path to achieving this dream was wrought with unexpected challenges, failures, disappointments, and self-doubt. Mike was rejected three times by NASA including a medical disqualification which Mike overcame by teaching his eyes to “see better.” His persistence paid off with two missions on the Space Shuttle and four spacewalks on the Hubble Space Telescope. Mike stresses that as long as you keep trying no matter what the obstacles, achieving your goal is possible.

  • Teamwork and Leadership

    Upon arriving at NASA, Mike discovered he was part of team that put the success of the team and the mission above individual accomplishments. The culture at NASA fostered strong relationships between astronauts and with NASA leadership. Teamwork and leadership was developed through the extraordinary experiences that Mike and his fellow astronauts shared during their training and spaceflights. Through these experiences strong friendships and working relationships were forged that enable Mike and his colleagues to complete astronaut training, overcome tragedy, and repair the greatest scientific instrument in space – the Hubble Space Telescope. Mike discusses how teamwork and leadership led to success during his spaceflights and in life.

  • Innovation and Problem Solving

    Mike’s second spaceflight was the final Space Shuttle servicing mission to the Hubble Space Telescope. On that mission Mike was tasked with the most complicated spacewalk ever attempted: the in-space repair of a delicate scientific instrument inside of the telescope. A major miscue during that spacewalk nearly led to failure. But the ground control team and the astronauts in space worked together to come up with an innovative solution that saved the day and the mission. Mike explains how although not every problem has an obvious solution, preparation and innovation can help us with overcoming unforeseen challenges and adapting to change.

  • Being Resilient and Adaptable in Times of Change and Uncertainty

    Mike’s second space flight was one of the last of the Space Shuttle Program. It was time for NASA to retire the space shuttle and move on to the next phase in space exploration. That next phase included flying exclusively on the Russian Soyuz for the foreseeable future and working with commercial companies in the coming age of private space travel.

    Many at NASA did not want to accept these changes. But the last few years have shown that those who accepted these changes have thrived, while those who resisted are no longer contributing. Technological progress and entrepreneurship are inevitable in every industry, and the NASA team learned to embrace the changes in order to move on to that next phase. We now have partnerships and burgeoning private space industry. Our future in space is bright because of these changes.

  • Recognizing the Purpose in your Work

    No matter how much we enjoy our jobs we sometimes get caught up in the day-to-day activities and can forget the big picture. This can even happen to astronauts. Mike stresses the importance of trying to remember the reason why we work as hard as we do. In addition to supporting our families and enjoying the challenges of our jobs, we should always remember how we are making the world a better place through our work. For Mike, as an astronaut, it was servicing and repairing the Hubble Space Telescope. Arguably the greatest scientific instrument ever built, Hubble made some of the greatest scientific discoveries in history while showing us the beauty of our universe. Contributing to great projects makes all the hard work and sacrifice worthwhile.

  • An Astronaut’s View on Planet Earth

    The orbit of the Hubble Space Telescope is 350 miles above the Earth, 100 miles higher than the International Space Station. From that altitude, astronauts are able to see the curvature of our planet, and spacewalking astronauts are able to take in the magnificent views through their helmet visors with a 360- degree view of the Earth and the surrounding universe. Mike describes his observations and feelings while viewing our planet, including its fragility and the importance of taking care of it.

  • Finding and Pursuing That Next Challenge

    After a realizing a dream, there comes a time when one needs to find that next dream in life. For Mike, his astronaut career was a little boy dream come true. After 18 years it was time to find a new challenge in life and a new dream. Mike discusses the difficulty of giving up the most exciting and interesting job he could ever have for the next phase in life. New challenges are needed for happiness, and there is no reason why one dream job cannot be replaced by another. In Mike’s case that has meant a new career as a university professor, museum advisor, author, television personality, and speaker sharing his lessons and experiences from his life as an astronaut.

  • Private Space Travel and the Future of Spaceflight

    We are in a very interesting time for space travel, transitioning from over 50 years of human space programs conducted exclusively by governments, to programs that provide new opportunities for private enterprise. It is similar to air travel a century ago when airplanes were used for government and military purposes and for barnstorming.

    Those early years led to the thriving commercial airline industry of today. Some of these programs are governments working with private enterprise such as the NASA Commercial Crew Program with Boeing and Elon Musk’s SpaceX. Others are more purely commercial companies such as Jeff Bezos’ Blue Origin and Richard Branson’s Virgin Galactic. There are also many smaller companies developing private space opportunities in tourism, rocket propulsion, zero gravity. science, and planetary exploration. Mike’s students at Columbia, as well as students he meets around the world, are very excited about careers in the space program, because in the near future it will not only be governments going to space, but also private innovators and entrepreneurs.

  • STEM Education

    Inspired at age 6 to become an astronaut while watching Neil Armstrong taking the first steps on the moon, Mike had no idea how to make his idea come true. But he discovered in elementary, middle, and high school that he liked math and science and decided to study engineering in college. Although being an astronaut was not on his mind in college, Mike followed his STEM interests, which eventually would lead him to NASA and the astronaut program. Following one’s interests can lead toward a happy and successful career even if a person is undecided about what they want to do with their lives while in school. Mike’s parents never had the opportunity to go to college but going to college and getting a STEM education changed his life. He learned not only about engineering, but also about how dreams come true – by getting an education in an area in which one is passionate.

  • Resourcefulness When Recovering from Adversity, Tragedy, and Disappointment

    Mike’s first spaceflight was on Space Shuttle Columbia. On Columbia’s next voyage, the crew and the space shuttle were lost during re- entry. It was devastating to lose seven of his friends in an instant. While grieving and consoling the families of those fallen heroes, another reality set in: what would happen to the future of the space program? The International Space Station was not yet completed, and the Hubble Space Telescope needed repair. Mike and his colleagues would not let the loss of their friends be in vain. Innovative procedures, tools, and techniques were developed to get the shuttle flying again to finish that important work. Mike shares stories of how that same effort and attitude is needed now to recover from the effects of COVID-19 on our businesses and lives.

What other organizations say about Mike Massimino

Mike was absolutely phenomenal. His presentation was engaging and he hit on every point we discussed in our planning calls. I have had several attendees come up to me to tell me that he is the best speaker they have ever heard. You know the audience is engaged when you have two open bars set in the back of the room and not one person gets up to get a drink! He also spent so much time after his keynote talking to our attendees and taking photos, so I truly appreciate him going the extra mile for us. I am truly not exaggerating when I tell you that he was the highlight of our retreat and every single person I have spoken to has commented on what an outstanding job he did. 

Legal

What other organizations say about Mike Massimino

Mike was really great to work with and just some amazing stories and we’re bummed our clients couldn’t meet him in person, but we think this is the next best thing. Sort of like him talking to us from space. Many of his stories are very topical to what we are all going through right now including the quarantine astronauts go through before going into space and the isolation even in space being disconnected from the world. The story of teamwork with his fellow astronaut classmates was especially powerful for me- this idea that we win or lose together. A great reminder that we’re all in this together right now. And I enjoyed his story about needing to both accept change and anticipate change in the same moment. You have 30 seconds of venting, ranting, or feeling sorry for yourself- and then you move forward. Because the only constant is change. Really powerful! Please thank him for us.

Financial Services

What other organizations say about Mike Massimino

Mike is so inspiring, motivational, and GENUINE!!! His stories are amazing! I could listen to him all day! It was truly a hit with our audience. Please thank Mike on behalf of the entire team. I hope we get to work together on another event in the future.

Financial Services

REQUEST AVAILABILITY

Tell us about your event and the speaker you are interested in booking and we will be in touch right away.