by Traci Sorell
and Natasha Donovan
Mary Golda Ross, a Cherokee woman, excelled at math from the time she was a teenager in the 1920s. Mary began attending college at 16, and later taught high school math and science before she began working as a mathematician for the Lockheed Aircraft Corporation. Wanting to move into engineering, she took additional classes and was eventually selected to be part of a secret team researching orbiting satellites for the space race; their work was classified, and much of it remains classified today. Across her career, Mary helped recruit and support Native people and young women interested in engineering; doing so was one of the many ways she lived the four Cherokee values (humility, working cooperatively, gaining life skills in all areas, and helping others access equal opportunity and education). Pencil, ink, and digital illustrations accompany a narrative that ends with a timeline, author’s note, source notes, and bibliography, and the four Cherokee values in both the Cherokee syllabary and English. (Ages 7-10)
CCBC Choices 2022. © Cooperative Children's Book Center, Univ. of Wisconsin - Madison, 2022. Used with permission.
An American Indian Library Association Youth Literature Award Honor Picture Book
Mary Golda Ross designed classified airplanes and spacecraft as Lockheed Aircraft Corporation's first female engineer. Find out how her passion for math and the Cherokee values she was raised with shaped her life and work.
Cherokee author Traci Sorell and Métis illustrator Natasha Donovan trace Ross's journey from being the only girl in a high school math class to becoming a teacher to pursuing an engineering degree, joining the top-secret Skunk Works division of Lockheed, and being a mentor for Native Americans and young women interested in engineering. In addition, the narrative highlights Cherokee values including education, working cooperatively, remaining humble, and helping ensure equal opportunity and education for all.
"A stellar addition to the genre that will launch careers and inspire for generations, it deserves space alongside stories of other world leaders and innovators."—starred, Kirkus Reviews
Publisher description retrieved from Google Books.