To the 40th Anniversary of the spaceflight
performed by Valentina Tereshkova, the first woman-cosmonaut


Valentina Vladimirovna

Pilot-cosmonaut of the USSR,
Airforce Major General in retirement
10th person in space in the world,
the 6th cosmonaut in the USSR

The world's firsts:
- first woman in space (Vostok-6, 1963);
- first woman pilot (commander) of a spacecraft (Vostok-6, 1963);
- first single (without a crew) flight of a woman in space (Vostok-6, 1963).

Date and place of birth: March 6, 1937, village Maslennikovo, Tutaev district, Yaroslavl region, RSFSR (Russia).

In 1960 graduated from Yaroslavl extra-mural light industry college specializing as process technician for cotton spinning.
In 1969 graduated with honors from N.Ye.Zhukovsky Airforce Engineering Academy and received a "pilot-cosmonaut-engineer" qualification".

Academic degree: candidate of science, engineering (1976), author of more than 50 published papers.

Working career:
From 1954 worked at Yaroslavl tire factory.
In 1955-1960 worked at the Yaroslavl Order of Lenin Duck Fabric Industrial Complex Krasny Perekop.
Went in for parachuting at Yaroslavl aviation club (made 163 jumps), 1st class in parachuting.
On March 12, 1962, by Order №67 of the Airforce Chief Commander, she was enrolled in the cosmonaut corps of the Airforce Cosmonaut Training Center as a trainee cosmonaut.
March through November, 1962, she completed basic cosmonaut training at the Cosmonaut Training Center.
She made 21 flights on planes Il-14 and MiG-15 with an instructor (total flying time of 16 hours 42 minutes), made 44 parachute jumps with delays ranging from 5 to 60 seconds, 4 out which were the jumps with special outfitting on. Studied spacecraft Vostok-3A and its systems. She was the senior in the women trainees team. Concurrently (till April 1963) she was being trained for the Vostok-6 mission, along with I.Solovieva, V.Ponomareva, Zh.Yerkina.
In December 1962 she passed her exams and received the qualification of "cosmonaut".
She made her 1st space mission on June 16 through 19 as a commander of Vostok-6. The mission took place simultaneously with the mission of Vostok-5 piloted by V.Bykovsky. The duration of her mission was 2 days 22 hours 50 minutes. Her call sign was "Chaika" ("Seagull").
From June 1963 to 1997 she worked as a cosmonaut and test cosmonaut instructor at the Airforce Cosmonaut Training Center.
On April 28, 1997, by Decree №429 of the President of Russian Federation she was retired from cosmonaut corps in connection with reaching the age limit (Ministry of Defense Order dated April 30, 1997).
Since 1997 she has been working as a senior staff scientist at Yu.A.Gagarin Cosmonaut Training Center.

Social and political activities:
Since 1960 - a member of the bureau of Krasnoperekopsk district committee of the Young Communist League of Yaroslavl.
1966-1989 - deputy of the Supreme Soviet of the USSR of the 7th - 11th convocations (1974-1989 - a member of the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet of the USSR).
1968-1987 - chairperson of the Committee of Soviet Women.
Since 1969 - a vice president of the International Democratic Federation of Women.
1971-1989 - a member of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union (CPSU) (elected at 24th, 25th and 26th party congresses), a delegate of the 27th CPSU congress.
A member of the Presidential Council of the USSR-France Society.
February 1987-1992 - the chairperson of the Presidium of the Union of Soviet Societies for friendship and cultural contacts with foreign countries.
1989 - January 1992 - a People's Deputy of USSR from the Union of soviet societies for friendship and cultural contacts and "Rodina" ("Motherland") society, a delegate of the Congress of people's deputies of USSR.
1992-1993 - a deputy chairperson of the Russian Agency for International Cooperation.
Since 1994 - heads the Russian Center for International Scientific and Cultural Cooperation under the auspices of the Government of the Russian Federation.
Since August 1998 - a member of the editorial board of the all-Russian popular-science magazine "Polyot" ("Flight").

Honorary titles: Hero of the Soviet Union (June 22, 1963), Pilot-cosmonaut of the USSR (June 22, 1963), Hero of Socialist Labor of Czechoslovak Socialist Republic, Hero of Socialist Labor of the People's Republic of Bulgaria, Hero of Labor of the Democratic Republic of Vietnam, Hero of Socialist Labor of the Mongolian People's Republic, a Doctor of University of Edinburgh (Great Britain, November 24, 1990), Doctor of University of Valencia (Spain), honorary student of Bologna University in Italy (September 1967), honored master of sports of the USSR (1963). In 2000, a British association "Annual Women's Assembly" awarded her an honorary title of the "Greatest woman of the 20th century".

Government awards and decorations: "Gold Star" medal of the Hero of the Soviet Union (June 22, 1963), two orders of Lenin (June 22, 1963 and May 6, 1981, the second order was awarded for successful activities to promote and strengthen links with progressive public and peace-loving forces in foreign countries), Order of October Revolution (December 1, 1971), Order of the Red Banner of Labor (March 5, 1987 for public work), Order for Distinguished Service to the Fatherland of the 3rd degree (March 6, 1997, in connection with the 60th anniversary), 9 medals. Honorary award from the Government of the Russian Federation (March 3, 1997).

Awards and decorations from foreign states: "Gold Star" medal of the Hero of Socialist Labor of Czechoslovak Socialist Republic (August, 1963), "Gold Star" medal of the Hero of Socialist Labor of the People's Republic of Bulgaria and Order of Georgi Dimitrov (September 9, 1963), Order of Karl Marx and Bekker medal (October 1963, GDR), Grunwald Cross of the 1st degree (October 1963, Poland), Order of Nepal of the 1st degree (November, 1963), Order of the Star of the Republic of Indonesia of the 2nd degree (November, 1963), Order of Volta (January 1964, Ghana), Order of the State Banner of the Hungarian People's Republic (April, 1965), "Gold Star" medal of the Hero of the Mongolian People's Republic and the Order of Suhe-Bator (May 1965, Mongolia), Order of Enlightenment (August 1969, Afghanistan), Order of the Planet (December 1969, Jordan), Order of the Nile's Necklace (January 1971, United Arab Republic), medal of the "Gold Star" of the Hero of Labor of Vietnam (October, 1971), O'Higens Order and the Golden Badge of the Airforce (March, 1972, Chile), Order of the Yugoslav Banner (November, 1972), Order "For Achievements in Science" (November 17, Romania), Order of the Sun (1974, Peru), Order of Playa Hiron and Order of Ann Betancourt (1974, Cuba), medal "For Strengthening the Companionship in Arms" (1976, Bulgaria), the highest order of Ethiopia (1981).

Awards from scientific and public organizations: K.E.Tsiolkovsky Gold Medal from the Academy of Sciences of USSR, gold medal from the British Interplanetary Society "For Successes in Space Exploration" (February, 1964, Great Britain), gold medal "Space" (FAI), Halaber prize for astronautics, Joliot-Curie Golden medal of Peace (1964, France), order of "Wind Rose" with a diamond from the International Committee for aeronautics and space flight, "Golden Mimosa" from the Italian Women Union (1963).

Honorary citizen of the following towns: Kaluga, Karaganda, Leninsk (1977), Yaroslavl, Leninakan (1965), Vitebsk (USSR), Montreuil and Drancy (France), Montgomery (Great Britain), Polizzi Generosa (Italy), Darhan (1965, Mongolian People's Republic), Sophia, Burgas, Petrich, Stara-Zagora, Pleven, Varna (1963, all in the People's Republic of Bulgaria), Bratislava (1963, Czechoslovak Socialist Republic).

Named after V.Tereshkova are a crater on the Moon and asteroid №1671 ("Seagull").
A bronze bust was placed in Moscow in the Space Heroes Alley.

Based on materials from reference book "Soviet and Russian cosmonauts. 1960-2000"
under the general editorship of Doctor of Law,
Pilot-cosmonaut of the Russian Federation Yu.M.Baturin.





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