Dottie Metcalf-Lindenburger grew up along the Front Range of Colorado. A scholar athlete, she ran cross-country and track and earned her B.A. in Geology from Whitman College. She went on to get a teaching certification from Central Washington University, and she taught earth science and astronomy for five years at Hudson’s Bay High School in Vancouver, WA. In addition to teaching, she coached cross country and Science Olympiad.
In June of 2004, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) selected her to join the Astronaut Corps. After several years of training, she flew as a mission specialist on the STS-131 crew, an International Space Station (ISS) resupply mission. Dottie served as Mission Specialist 2 (also known as the flight engineer), a robotic arm operator, the Intra-vehicular crew member (the inside coordinator of the spacewalks), and a transfer crew member (helping move six tons of hardware and equipment). The mission lasted fifteen days.
During June of 2012, Dottie commanded the NASA Extreme Environment Mission Operation (NEEMO) in the Aquarius Reef Habitat off the Florida coast. The underwater mission sought to develop techniques for working at an asteroid, while operating under a 100-second time delay.
In June of 2014, Dottie retired from the Astronaut Corps and returned to the Pacific Northwest with her family. She finished her M.S. in applied geology at the University of Washington, and she currently works as an environmental consultant for Geosyntec. In her spare time, she enjoys trail running, backpacking and hiking with her family, singing for her church’s choir, and playing the guitar. She continues to speak and promote Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Mathematics (STEAM) education, and serves on three boards: The Mars Generation, Space Camp Alumni Association, and NatureBridge.