On Monday, April 24, Expedition 51 Commander Peggy Whitson will officially set the U.S. record for most cumulative days in space. President Donald Trump, First Daughter Ivanka Trump, and NASA astronaut Kate Rubins will make a special Earth-to-space call at 10 a.m. EDT Monday, April 24 to personally congratulate Whitson.
Peggy A. Whitson (Ph.D.) is currently part of Expedition 50/51, which is her third long-duration mission to the International Space Station. Whitson and her crewmates, Cosmonaut Oleg Novitskiy and ESA astronaut Thomas Pesquet launched on November 17, 2016. The Iowa native completed two six-month tours of duty aboard the station for Expedition 5 in 2002, and as the station commander for Expedition 16 in 2008. She has accumulated 377 days in space between the two missions, the most for any U.S. woman at the time of her return to Earth. Whitson has also performed six spacewalks, totaling 39 hours and 46 minutes.