Karen Pickering

Karen Pickering

Deputy Chief of the Thermal Systems Branch
NASA

Dr. Karen Pickering has worked at NASA’s Johnson Space Center since 1991, working in water recovery systems technology development in roles ranging from subsystem engineer to project manager.

She is currently the Deputy Chief of the Thermal Systems Branch, leading engineers responsible for active thermal control of the International Space Station as well as development of advanced thermal technologies. 

Dr. Pickering earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Civil Engineering from Texas A&M University. She earned Master of Science and Doctor of Philosophy degrees in Environmental Engineering from Rice University and was a National Science Foundation Graduate Fellow. 

She was awarded the Rudolph Hering Medal from the American Society of Civil Engineers for technical excellence in an environmental engineering publication. In addition, she is the recipient of a Silver Snoopy award and a Space Flight Awareness Award, as well as two JSC Director’s Commendations.