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Diana Trujillo      

NASA Aerospace Engineer & Mission Lead for the Mars Curiosity Rover; STEM Education Advocate

Diana Trujillo was born and raised in Cali, Colombia, and as a young Latina she imagined exploring and traveling through space. At the age of seventeen, just one day after graduating from high school in Colombia, Trujillo immigrated to the United States to pursue her dream of one day working for NASA. She enrolled in English as a Second Language courses, worked three jobs as a housekeeper, and supported her own full-time studies.

Since 2008, she has worked at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, contributing to both human and robotic space missions. Currently, she is Deputy Project System Engineer and Deputy Team Chief of the Engineering division of Curiosity (Mars Science Laboratory), NASA’s largest and most advanced Mars rover. She is responsible for ensuring that Curiosity’s day-to-day plan meets the team’s science objectives while maintaining rover health and safety. Previously, she has also served as Surface Sampling System Activity Lead, Dust Removal Tool Lead Systems Engineer, Flight Ground Systems Engineer, and Vehicle System Testbed Mars Surface Lead.

She has formerly worked at Orbital Science Corporation and at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center, contributing to missions including the Constellation program for human spaceflight to the Moon and beyond and the Commercial Orbital Transportations Services program for privately-developed resupply capacity for the International Space Station. She also served as Coach for the Zero Gravity Corporation, the world's only commercial provider of weightless parabolic flights. To date, Trujillo has logged more than 60 minutes of weightless time.

Trujillo is a passionate advocate for STEM education, particularly for women and the Hispanic community. She currently serves as a member of the Board of Trustees for the Columbia Memorial Space Center, a hands-on learning center located in Downey, California.

Trujillo earned a BS in Aerospace Engineering from the University of Maryland, with additional studies at the University of Florida. She is also a graduate of Miami-Dade Community College and of the NASA Academy.

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