Emily Carney is a spaceflight enthusiast and author hailing from Saint Petersburg, Florida. Her first vivid space memory was seeing Columbia launch in late 1981 (STS-2). Even though she was very young (three years old) and the launch was 140 miles away from where she stood, she’ll never forget it. From then on, she was obsessed with the space shuttle and spaceflight in general.
In 1997, Carney enlisted in the United States Navy, and at one point worked as a nuclear propulsion mechanical operator aboard the USS George Washington (CVN 73). When she was honorably discharged in 2003, she went back to college and earned a degree in education. She only taught for a brief time, but after she left the education field, her passion for spaceflight was reignited.
Carney worked as a freelance writer from 2008 to 2011, and during that time she started a spaceflight blog, This Space Available (accessible via http://this-space-available.blogspot.com). Fun fact: the late Gene Cernan (Gemini 9A, Apollo 10, and Apollo 17 astronaut, also known as “The Last Man on the Moon”) once asked her, “What the hell is a space blog?”
In 2011, Carney wanted to start a Facebook group for space enthusiasts, but was struggling to find a good name. Her husband, Steven, suggested “Space Hipsters” as sort of a sarcastic placeholder, but the name stuck. The group grew more quickly than she could imagine, and as of August 2018 it totals approximately 15,200 members. Space Hipsters boasts members from all around the world, and includes space enthusiasts, writers, artists, scientists, engineers, aspiring astronauts, and a few actual astronauts.