Headshot of Richard Jennings

Richard Jennings

Nonresident Fellow


Richard T. Jennings, M.D., is a nonresident fellow in the Baker Institute Space Policy Program and a clinical professor in space medicine at The University of Texas Medical Branch (UTMB). He also serves as a flight surgeon for Space Adventures. Jennings worked as a NASA flight surgeon from 1987 to 1995 and was chief of the Flight Medicine Clinic and chief of medical operations for the space shuttle. He served as crew surgeon or deputy crew surgeon for 14 shuttle missions and provided direct mission support for 45 shuttle flights. He also provided medical care in flight medicine at Johnson Space Center for 25 years. In 1995, he joined the faculty at UTMB and served as director for its aerospace medicine residency program. At UTMB, he supervised the physicians that support NASA in operations and advanced projects at the Johnson Space Center and the Gagarin Cosmonaut Training Center. As lead flight surgeon for Space Adventures, he has supported 5 Soyuz missions to the International Space Station. Jennings is a member of the Safety Advisory Panel for SpaceX, and he serves as a medical consultant for Virgin Galactic. He is a previous president of the Aerospace Medical Association and currently serves on the board of the Aerospace Medical Association Foundation. Jennings is a graduate of Oklahoma State University, the Oklahoma University College of Medicine and Wright State University. 

Contact at rjenning@utmb.edu.