Sharon Hagle is CEO and Founder of SpaceKids Global. Sharon completed her flight on Blue Origin's NS-20 launched on March 31, 2022 as a member of Crew 4. Joining Sharon on the flight was her husband, Marc Hagle, making them the first married couple to fly to space on a commercial vehicle. Sharon and Marc recently announced they will be returning to space with Blue Origin on a future flight.
Founded in 2015, SpaceKids Global's mission is to bring the possibility of space to kids everywhere, by inspiring students to excel in STEAM+ Environment education, ensuing girls are equally represented.
SpaceKids Global hosts a variety of annual challenges designed to inspire kids to pursue careers in the space industry. One of the recent SpaceKids programs is a national essay competition, Why I Want to go to Space. The students authors of the two winning essays were selected to experience a ZERO-G flight. In 2023, SpaceKids Global is sponsoring field trips to Kennedy Space Center for selected fourth grade students from Orange County Title 1 schools.
Sharon shares her journey to space and encourages students through speaking engagements at schools, nonprofit youth organizations, science centers, universities and space organizations. To date, Sharon has reached over 493,000 students globally with the goal of helping fill the 3.5 million STEM job vacancies predicted in the United States by 2025.
Sharon was recognized as one of the Orlando Business Journal's 2023 Women Who Mean Business, and is the recipient of the Clifford H. Lee Lifetime Achievement Award for her dedication to and achievements in philanthropy throughout Central Florida. She is a member of the Purdue University Engineering Advisory Council. She also serves on the board of directors for Canadian-based Cyber Security Global Alliance and has developed an international partnership with this agency to host an annual interactive, educational space conference for kids.
Sharon had a decades long career in commercial real estate as a site selector for national retail tenants in the southeastern United States. Sharon attended Morris Harvey College (now called the University of Charleston) in Charleston, W. Va.
Saba, The Space Dog
Saba, a Pomeranian, comes from a family of entertainers. His father's career began early on in a photo shoot with the Backstreet Boys and several episodes of Life Styles of the Rich and Furry. Saba's career began with SpaceKids Global where he was able to combine his love of kids, education and space. Blue Origin made him an honorary member of NS-20 with a flight suit matching Crew 4.
A philanthropist at heart, SpaceKids Global gave him the opportunity to focus on his charitable work where he has supported several organizations including Canine Companions, ASPCA and others. Saba, a national speaker, has engaged with kids through Boys and Girls Club, Girl Scouts, Yuri's Night LA and SEDS.
He resides in Central Florida with his family. To contact Saba, email him at email@example.com
Leah Shepherd serves as Executive Consultant for SpaceKids Global, overseeing the foundation’s day-to-day operations, strategic business plan and major donor relationships.
Leah launched the onePULSE Foundation and was a key architect in the exponential growth and successful milestones of the start-up organization. She also served as Vice President of Philanthropy for the Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts and was part of the venue’s grand opening team in 2014. Her career also includes extensive revenue growth experience with business development roles at the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Orlando Magic. She launched her career in the hospitality industry, spending five years with Marriott Hotels, where she was honored as Director of Sales of the Year.
A graduate of Florida State University, Shepherd is a lifelong resident of Central Florida. She currently serves as board secretary of POLIS Institute, and is Vice-Chair of the City of Orlando’s Affordable Housing Advisory Committee.