A man whose life has been filled with many and varied accomplishments, Scott Parazynski is a highly decorated astronaut, medical doctor, aviation expert, mountain climber and explorer, world traveller, entrepreneur, and inventor. He is also a much sought after keynote speaker.
After spending a substantial part of his childhood travelling and staying in such diverse areas of the globe as Lebanon, Dakar, Iran, and Greece, Scott Parazynski graduated from Stanford University and Stanford Medical School. From there, he went to Harvard in order to prepare for a career in emergency medicine and trauma.
Scott Parazynski was elected to join NASA’s Astronaut Corps in 1992. He flew 5 Space Shuttle Missions and conducted seven spacewalks during his 17 years as an astronaut. This period also saw him serve several senior leadership roles, including that of EVA Branch Chief and that of Lead Astronaut for Space Shuttle Thermal Protection System Inspection and Repair.
Amongst his many and various mission highlights, Scott Parazynski includes a globing mission map, leading the first joint US-Russian spacewalk while docked at Mir, the Russian space station, and serving as Senator John Glenn’s crewmate and personal physician. He is the second astronaut who has performed four spacewalks on a single Space Shuttle Mission. Of these, the fourth spacewalk is regarded by many as one of the most challenging and dangerous ever performed. This particular spacewalk saw him the furthest from the safety of an airlock than any other astronaut previously. His aim was to repair a fully energised solar array wing. This was successful due to the tremendous coordination effort in orbit and on the ground by Mission Control and other engineering experts.
With regards to his career in space, Scott Parazynski has spent a total of eight weeks in space with over 47 hours outside on spacewalks. He was inducted into the US Astronaut Hall of Fame at Kennedy Space Centre in 2016.
A SCUBA diver and mountaineer, Scott Parazynski’s love of climbing started as a teenager. He has, thus far, climbed in the Alaska Mountain Range, the Cascades, Rockies, Alps, Andes, and Himalayas. His second Mount Everest attempt in 2009 was successful and saw him become the first, and only, astronaut to ever accomplish this feat. He also, as part of a NASA-sponsored expedition, conducted a scientific dive in the summit caldera lake of the Licancabur volcano. This is the highest lake on the planet.
Scott Parazynski, on a more recent note, served as the Founding Director and Chief Medical Officer for a Polar Medical Operations expedition. This task saw him oversee the medical screening and on-ice care of the National Science Foundation’s US Antarctic Programme.
A prolific inventor and product developer who serves on the boards of several organisations and companies, Scott Parazynski is the co-founder of Blue Marble Exploration. He serves as the organisation’s Chief Explorer. The company’s focus is on pushing human capabilities in extreme environments by means of technological innovation. He is also the Managing Director of Apogee Interests which is focused on commercializing his various medical devices, gear, and consumer products developed for extreme environments.
In 2014, Scott Parazynski was designated University Explorer and Professor of Practice at Arizona State University. He is also the recipient of numerous awards. Amongst these he includes:
In addition to the above-mentioned achievements, Scott Parazynski was a Top 10 competitor in the 1998 US Olympic Luge team and served as a coach for the Philipines during the Calgary Olympic Winter Games. He was also elected as an Honorary Captain for the US Olympic Luge Team for the Vancouver Games. Scott Parazynski is also a member of the Arkansas Aviation Hall of Fame and was awarded a doctorate from the the Military University of Technology in Warsaw, Poland.
Scott Parazynski is a keynote speaker who offers talks about innovation, risk management, mentorship, and leadership under severely adverse conditions. He lives in the USA and presents in English.
I served with Scott on the Board of Challenger Center for Space science Engineering, a true honor. Scott is a great leader who truly respects the opinions of others while moving forward for the "good of the cause" of a non-profit. Scott is also an accomplished public speaker.”
“There are simply no words to rightfully describe the kind of person Scott is...from Astronaut to Physician, to Explorer, to Inventor, to one who has successfully summited Mt. Everest, to the down to earth every day kind of guy who is extremely kind and friendly. If you don't know Scott, your truly missing out...he's great...”
I invited Scott to share his passion and experiences interacting with the public at a NASA-wide meeting in Boulder in September, 2010. My audience was totally captivated by Scott's warm personality, and he was able to quickly connect with the participants and actively engage them in his talk.”
“Scott has an enthusiastic, charismatic, and magnetic personality befitting his prior roles as astronaut, inventor, adventurer, and medical scientist. His energy and passion are infectious and he throws his full intellect and creativity behind each project.”