Astronaut with local roots will highlight the importance of innovation Nov. 16

Tue, 10/31/2017 - 3:09pm -- brenda_alling

Michael Barratt NASA headshotVANCOUVER, Wash. – Dr. Michael Barratt, a Camas High School graduate who became a NASA astronaut, will speak at a special public event for Global Entrepreneurship Week in Vancouver on Nov. 16. Titled “Celebrate Global Entrepreneurship Week: Lift Off to Innovation,” the event is sponsored by Washington State University Vancouver’s Business Growth Mentor and Analysis Program and the Columbia River Economic Development Council as part of its GROW Clark County series. It runs from 5 to 7 p.m. at the Pearson Air Museum Historic Hangar.

Dr. Barratt will discuss how his local educational experience set him on the path to become a NASA medical doctor and astronaut. His career highlights the importance of investing in education, particularly STEM skills and career-connected learning opportunities, as well as the long-term economic impact of a well-educated and highly skilled local workforce. 

Dr. Barratt completed two space flights. He helped develop NASA’s space medicine programs and was medical operations lead for the International Space Station. He evaluated the medical aspects of humans adapting to weightlessness and the medical risks of space flight. His work with NASA’s research programs has played a role in accelerating innovation in the biotech and pharmaceutical community. He co-edited the book “Principles of Clinical Medicine for Space Flight” (2008).

General admission is $25 and includes hors d’oeuvres and a no-host bar; CREDC investor admission is $20; and college student admission is free with a student ID. To register, visit Doors open at 5 p.m., and the program begins at 5:30. The Pearson Air Museum Historic Hangar is located at 1115 E. Fifth St., Vancouver, WA 98661.

About Global Entrepreneurship week

Occurring annually, Global Entrepreneurship Week is an international initiative that has involved more than 10 million people from 102 countries since its launch in 2007. GEW celebrates the innovators and job creators who launch startups that bring ideas to life, drive economic growth and expand human welfare.

About the Columbia River Economic Development Council

Serving Clark County since 1982, CREDC is a private-public partnership of more than 150 investors and strategic partners working together to advance the economic vitality of Clark County through business growth and innovation. Through collaborative leadership, CREDC promotes job creation and capital investment while maintaining the community’s exceptionally high quality of life. A primary component of CREDC’s new strategic economic development strategy is supporting a strong startup ecosystem that facilitates the growth of entrepreneurship, which is a critical part of a diverse and resilient economy.

About WSU Vancouver

As one of six campuses of the Washington State University system, WSU Vancouver offers big-school resources in a small-school environment. The university provides affordable, high-quality baccalaureate- and graduate-level education to benefit the people and communities it serves. As the only four-year research university in Southwest Washington, WSU Vancouver helps drive economic growth through relationships with local businesses and industries, schools and nonprofit organizations. 

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Brenda Alling, Office of Marketing and Communications, 360-546-9601,

Kimberly Pincheira, CREDC Director of Communications and Strategic Partnerships, 360-567-3181,

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