Victor Glover, First African-American Astronaut to Live Aboard the ISS for Lengthy Stay, Receives Gold Pin

Donna Balancia
3 min readNov 17, 2020


Astronaut Victor Glover, the first African-American astronaut to live on board the ISS for a lengthy time — among his other accomplishments — has been awarded the astronaut Gold Pin for hitting the 100-kilometer “flown” mark.

The Dragon Crew-1 astronauts Commander Michael Hopkins, with Shannon Walker and Soichi Noguchi celebrated the event for Glover during an endearing ceremony in close quarters aboard the Dragon Capsule, which was en route to the Space Station.

“This is something that is a tradition within the astronaut office,” Hopkins said to viewers in presenting the pin to Glover. “To give you a little history on it, so when you first are selected as an astronaut and you come in for your basic training you go through about two years of training to become an astronaut. And then once that is complete and you graduate we give each candidate now becomes an astronaut. But they’re an ‘un-flown’ astronaut and they get a silver pin.

‘Once You’ve Passed that 100-Km Mark’

“But once you’ve passed that 100-kilometer mark you then get a Gold Pinandwe have one member of our crew who does not have the appropriate accoutrement for his uniform,” Hopkins said. “We give Victor Glover his gold pin for passing 100 kilometers, congratulations.”

To earn an astronaut badge, a military officer must complete all required training and participate in a space flight more than 100 kilometers above the Earth.

Glover, known as “Ike” to his fellow astronauts, was selected as an astronaut in 2013 while serving as a Legislative Fellow in the United States Senate.

Glover is currently serving as pilot and second-in-command on the Crew-1 SpaceX Crew Dragon Resilience, which launched November 15, 2020. It is the first post-certification mission of SpaceX’s Crew Dragon spacecraft — the second crewed flight for that vehicle — and a long duration mission aboard the International Space Station. Glover also serves as Flight Engineer on the International Space Station for Expedition 64.

Glover was born in Pomona and he attended Cal Poly Pomona in the 1990s. The Cal Poly Magazine ran a terrific interview with Glover, worth checking out. He told the college paper: “I showed up maybe a little kicking and screaming,” Glover laugh s . “But by the time I finished and got to know the community and the town of San Luis Obispo, I also left kicking and screaming.”

The California native holds a Bachelor of Science in General Engineering, a Master of Science in Flight Test Engineering, a Master of Science in Systems Engineering and a Master of Military Operational Art and Science. Glover is a Naval Aviator and was a test pilot in the F/A‐18 Hornet, Super Hornet and EA‐18G Growler. He and his family have been stationed in many locations in the United States and Japan and he has deployed in combat and in peacetime.

The in-orbit Gold Pin ceremony was capped with fist-bumps as Glover and his famous bright smile displayed the pin to the viewers.

“All for one and Crew-1 for all,” Hopkins said, finishing out the little ceremony.

Originally published at on November 17, 2020.



Donna Balancia

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