As a kid, astronaut Mae Jemison was inspired by Lieutenant Uhura on Star Trek. Now she heads up 100 Year Starship, an organization devoted to overcoming the obstacles of human space exploration beyond our solar system.
As the first African American woman in space, Dr. Jemison felt it was important to “bring” people with her who’d been left out of space exploration. As the mission specialist aboard the shuttle Endeavor, she chose to bring: a poster of Judith Jameson performing the ballet “Cry”, a bundu statue from Sierra Leone, and the flag of the Alpha Kappa Alpha sorority—the oldest African American women’s sorority in the U.S.
Fun fact: After she came back from space, she showed up at a Star Trek convention and introduced herself to Nichelle Nichols and they became fast friends. Later, Mae Jemison had a role on Star Trek: Next Generation and became the first person on the show (but not the last!) to have actually been in space. Nichelle Nichols even visited her on set.