‘Hidden Figures’

When:
August 4, 2018 @ 7:00 pm – 9:00 pm
2018-08-04T19:00:00-04:00
2018-08-04T21:00:00-04:00
Where:
Heald Auditorium at Ludlow Town Hall
37 S Depot St
Ludlow, VT 05149
USA
Cost:
Donations accepted
Contact:
802-228-7239

NASA mathematicians Katherine Johnson (Taraji P. Henson), Dorothy Vaughan (Octavia Spencer) and Mary Jackson (Janelle Monáe) cross gender and race lines to help launch astronaut John Glenn (Glen Powell) into outer space.

In 1961, mathematician Katherine Goble works as a human computer in the gender and racially segregated division West Area Computers of the Langley Research Center in Hampton, Va., alongside her colleagues, aspiring engineer Mary Jackson and their unofficial acting-supervisor Dorothy Vaughan.

Following the successful Soviet launch of Yuri Gagarin, pressure to send American astronauts into space increases. Supervisor Vivian Mitchell assigns Katherine to assist Al Harrison’s Space Task Group, given her skills in analytic geometry. She becomes the first black woman on the team.

Katherine’s new colleagues are initially dismissive and demeaning, especially head engineer Paul Stafford. Meanwhile, Mitchell informs Dorothy that she will not be promoted, as there are no plans to assign a “permanent supervisor for the colored group.” Mary is assigned to the space capsule heat shield team, and immediately identifies a flaw. With encouragement from the team leader, a Polish-Jewish Holocaust survivor, she submits an application for an official NASA engineer position and begins to pursue an engineering degree.

Popcorn will be supplied by Berkshire Bank, water by FOLA.

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About the Author: Cynthia Prairie has been a newspaper editor more than 30 years. She has worked at such publications as the Raleigh Times, the Baltimore News American, the Buffalo Courier Express, the Chicago Sun-Times and the Patuxent Publishing chain of community newspapers in Maryland. She and her family moved to Chester, Vermont in 2004.

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