Dr. Sally Ride (1951 - 2012) started collecting stamps at age 9 and continued throughout her life. Her personal collection was accessioned into the National Postal Museum's permanent collection in 2018. It includes seven stock book albums and one folder. The albums contain a variety of covers, stamps and other philatelic materials that she collected from the US Postal Service and foreign countries.
Sally Ride became the first American woman in space when she flew on the STS-7 shuttle mission in 1983. Her second and last space mission was STS-41G in 1984. A physicist with a Ph.D., she joined the astronaut corps in 1978 in the first class of astronauts recruited specifically for the Space Shuttle Program. Viewed as a leader in the NASA community, she served on the Rogers Commission after the Challenger accident in 1986 and the Columbia Accident Investigation Board in 2003. She also led the task force that produced a visionary strategic planning report in 1987, titled “NASA Leadership and America’s Future in Space” but known popularly as the "Ride Report."
After she left NASA in 1987, Dr. Ride taught first at Stanford and later at the University of California, San Diego, where she also served as the director of the California Space Institute. Until her death in 2012, she was president and CEO of Sally Ride Science, a company she founded to promote science education.
The Sally Ride stamp was issued May 23, 2018. The stamp art, sketched first in charcoal and then rendered in oil paint, features a colorful portrait of Ride in her light blue space suit with a dramatic depiction of a space shuttle lifting off in the background. Art director Ethel Kessler designed the stamp with artwork by Paul Salmon.
Postal Bulletin (April 12, 2018).