Through the Glass Ceiling to the Stars- Signed by Eileen Collins

Through the Glass Ceiling to the Stars- Signed by Eileen Collins

We are lucky enough to be the exclusive vendors of Eileen Collins' signed book, Through the Glass Ceiling to the Stars: The Story of the First American Woman to Command a Space Mission. Read more about this epic book and Collins herself in this week's blog.

“I hope that a young explorer who reads Eileen’s book will be inspired to become the first human on Mars. Eileen proves that there is no limit to what we can do if we stay true to our goals and keep moving forward.”—Buzz Aldrin

Eileen Collins was an aviation pioneer her entire career, from her crowning achievements as the first woman to command an American space mission as well as the first to pilot the space shuttle to her early years as one of the Air Force’s first female pilots. She was in the first class of women to earn pilot’s wings at Vance Air Force Base and was their first female instructor pilot. She was only the second woman pilot admitted to the Air Force’s elite Test Pilot Program at Edwards Air Force Base. NASA had such confidence in her skills as a leader and pilot that she was entrusted to command the first shuttle mission after the Columbia disaster, returning the US to spaceflight after a two-year hiatus. Since retiring from the Air Force and NASA, she has served on numerous corporate boards and is an inspirational speaker about space exploration and leadership.

Eileen M. Collins, USAF (Retired), retired from the Air Force in 2005 and from NASA in 2006, having logged more than 6,751 hours in thirty different types of aircraft and spent 872 hours in space. She is the recipient of the Distinguished Flying Cross and NASA Outstanding Leadership Medal and was inducted into the Astronaut Hall of Fame, among many other honors. Since retiring, she has traveled the world as a motivational speaker. Col. Collins serves as an advisor to the National Space Council and is a board member of the Astronauts Memorial Foundation. She is married, with two children, and lives in San Antonio, Texas.

Eileen Collins is among the most recognized and admired women in the world, yet this is the first time she has told her story in a book. It is a story not only of achievement and overcoming obstacles but of profound personal transformation. The shy, quiet child of an alcoholic father and struggling single mother, who grew up in modest circumstances and was an unremarkable student, she had few prospects when she graduated from high school, but she changed her life to pursue her secret dream of becoming an astronaut. She shares her leadership and life lessons throughout the book with the aim of inspiring and passing on her legacy to a new generation.

ShopAFA and Collins worked together to provide signed copies of Through the Glass Ceiling to the Stars. Collins, though retired, is constantly on the move. Her dedication to sharing her story and encouraging the next generation keeps her busy. Collins sat down with a select limited number of books to sign for ShopAFA. These hand-signed books come to ShopAFA straight from Collins, to be enjoyed by the supporters and members of the Air & Space Forces Association. Own your copy of Collins' book today, signed just for you!


I was the first lieutenant public affairs officer at Vance AFB and got to know Capt. Eileen Collins during a “first female instructor pilot” feature I worked up with a network TV show. Collins had a great, engaging personality. Reminded me of a female version of a “fighter jock.” One afternoon after instructing she dropped into my office to cooly recount the latest way a student pilot “tried to kill us.” The student in the other T-38 was supposed to break right and away … instead broke left, up and over the top of Collins and her student pilot. She said all four aviators just glanced at each other, as the Talons rolled over, cockpit to cockpit. Oh well! Collins’ squadron commander once told me she was a “good stick” and would probably be a Thunderbird pilot some day. Obviously, she plotted a different course …. I would love to read her book.

Michael Laughlin, LtCol, USAF-Ret

Hi, I am interested in a signed copy of Col. Eileen Collins book, Through the Glass Ceiling to the Stars. I am currently the coach and mentor of the Dover High School, CyberWave, Cyber Patriot team. We finished first in our State last year. I have been working diligently to break the glass ceiling for women in Tech. This year, I have three women on the team and hope to have more in the future. One day, we are hoping to finish in the top 20 in the country to make it to Final competition in Maryland. Col. Collins’ story is one that inspires and lets the women of tomorrow to know that anything is possible. Thank you so much, Deb Minassian, Instructor, Coach, and Mentor

Deborah Minassian

Not sure if you’d remember me but I was in the Tweet squadron at Vance at the same time and I think I was the only black instructor at the time. And I think we were in some Master’s classes in Colorado Springs. Just wanted to say congratulations on the book and a great career.

Skip Balanciere

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