Margot Lee Shetterly

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Margot Lee Shetterly
Margot Lee Shetterly.jpg
Shetterly in 2016
Born 1969 (age 48–49)
Hampton, Virginia
Occupation Writer
Nationality American
Alma mater University of Virginia
Genre Fiction
Notable awards Sloan Fellowship, Virginia Foundation for the Humanities Fellow
Website
www.margotleeshetterly.com

Margot Lee Shetterly (born 1969) is an American non-fiction writer who has also worked in investment banking and media startups. Her first book, Hidden Figures: The Story of the African-American Women Who Helped Win the Space Race (2016), is about African-American women mathematicians working at NASA who were instrumental to the success of the United States space program. She sold the movie rights while still working on the book, and it was adapted as a feature film of the same name, Hidden Figures (2016).[1] For several years Shetterly and her husband lived and worked in Mexico, where they founded and published Inside Mexico, a magazine directed to English-speaking expats.

Hampton, Virginia. Her father worked as a research scientist at NASA-Langley Research Center,[2][3] and her mother was an English professor at the historically black Hampton University.[4] Lee grew up knowing many African-American families with members who worked at NASA. She attended Phoebus High School and graduated from the University of Virginia's McIntire School of Commerce.

After college, Lee moved to New York and worked several years in investment banking: first on the Foreign Exchange trading desk at J.P. Morgan, then on Merrill Lynch's Fixed Income Capital Markets desk. She shifted to the media industry, working at a variety of startup ventures, including the HBO-funded website Volume.com. She married writer Aran Shetterly.

In 2005, the Shetterlys moved to Mexico to found an English-language magazine called Inside Mexico.[5] Directed to the numerous English-speaking expats in the country, it operated until 2009. From 2010 through 2013, the couple worked as content marketing and editorial consultants to the Mexican tourism industry.

Shetterly began researching and writing Hidden Figures in 2010. In 2014, she sold the film rights to the book to William Morrow, an imprint of HarperCollins, and it was optioned by Donna Gigliotti of Levantine Films.[6][7] The Fox 2000 feature film was released in 2016, and stars Taraji P. Henson, Octavia Spencer, Janelle Monáe, and Kevin Costner.

In 2013, Shetterly founded The Human Computer Project, an organization whose mission is to archive the work of all of the women who worked as computers and mathematicians in the early days of the National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics (NACA) and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA).[8]

A Hidden Figures children's book will be released in January 2018. The book will be co-written by Shetterly and will be geared towards children four to eight years old.[9]

Works[edit]

  • Hidden Figures: The Story of the African-American Women Who Helped Win the Space Race. William Morrow/HarperCollins, 2016. ISBN 9780062363596.
  • NASA-Langley Women's History Month 2014 Keynote: "Hidden Figures: The Female Mathematicians of NACA and NASA"

Honors[edit]

Shetterly received a 2014 Book Grant from the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation[10] for her book Hidden Figures. This first nonfiction work went on to win the Anisfield-Wolf Book Award.[11]

Shetterly has received two grants from the Virginia Foundation for the Humanities for her work on The Human Computer Project.[12]

On May 12, 2018, Shetterly was awarded an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters degree from Worcester Polytechnic Institute at its 150th Commencement exercises.[13]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Buckley, Cara (May 20, 2016). "Uncovering a Tale of Rocket Science, Race and the '60s". The New York Times. Retrieved July 13, 2016. 
  2. ^ Epstein, Sonia. "NASA Mathematician Katherine Johnson Receives Presidential Medal". Sloan Science and Film. Retrieved July 13, 2016. 
  3. ^ Mirk, Sarah (May 23, 2016). "In 'Hidden Figures,' NASA'S African American Mathematicians Will Land on the Big Screen". Bitch Media. Retrieved July 13, 2016. 
  4. ^ Atkinson, Joe. "From Computers to Leaders: Women at NASA Langley". NASA Langley. Retrieved July 13, 2016. 
  5. ^ Johnson, Reed (February 14, 2007). "Speaking the Same Language". LA Times. Retrieved July 13, 2016. 
  6. ^ Deahl, Rachel (March 10, 2014). "Book Deals: Week of March 10, 2014". Publishers Weekly. Retrieved July 14, 2016. 
  7. ^ Fleming Jr., Mike (July 9, 2015). "Ted Melfi & Fox 2000 in Talks For 'Hidden Figures'; How A Group of Math-Savvy Black Women Helped NASA Win Space Race". Deadline. Retrieved July 13, 2016. 
  8. ^ Atkinson, Joe. "From Computers to Leaders: Women at NASA Langley". NASA Langley. Retrieved July 13, 2016. 
  9. ^ Ha, Thu-Huong. "A children's picture book of "Hidden Figures" is coming". Quartz. Retrieved 2017-10-09. 
  10. ^ Epstein, Sonia. "NASA Mathematician Katherine Johnson Receives Presidential Medal". Sloan Science and Film. Retrieved July 13, 2016. 
  11. ^ http://www.anisfield-wolf.org/books/hidden-figures/
  12. ^ Bearinger, David. "The Human Computer Project". Virginia Foundation for the Humanitie. Retrieved July 13, 2016. 
  13. ^ https://www.wpi.edu/news/margot-lee-shetterly-author-hidden-figures-delivers-address-worcester-polytechnic-institute. Retrieved May 12, 2018.  Missing or empty |title= (help)

External links[edit]