Dava Newman

Director - MIT Media Lab

The Honorable Dr. Dava Newman is the Director of the MIT Media Lab. She holds the Apollo Program Professor of Astronautics chair at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and is a Harvard–MIT Health, Sciences, and Technology faculty member. She was awarded a MacVicar Faculty chair for making significant contributions to MIT undergraduate education. She served as NASA Deputy Administrator (2015-17), the first female engineer in this role, and was awarded the NASA Distinguished Service Medal. Her research and teaching expertise include aerospace biomedical engineering, human performance, advanced space suit design, AI/ML for climate, design, leadership development, innovation, and technology and policy. Newman has been principal investigator (PI) on five spaceflight missions flown aboard the Space Shuttle, Russian Mir Space Station and the International Space Station, and is best known for her revolutionary BioSuit™ planetary spacesuit. Recently, she co-founded EarthDNA with partner Guillermo Trotti to accelerate solutions for spaceship Earth’s Ocean, Land and Air subsystems by curating satellite data to make the world work for 100% of humanity. She has >350 publications and has supervised >100 MIT graduate students and 200 undergraduates. Her teaching and research mantra is to: love, act, design, and innovate (LADI).