Chris Hadfield

Chris Hadfield

Astronaut | First Canadian Commander of the International Space Station

Referred to as “the most famous astronaut since Neil Armstrong,” Colonel Chris Hadfield is a worldwide sensation whose video of David Bowie’s “Space Oddity” — seen by over 75 million people — was called “possibly the most poignant version of the song ever created”, by Bowie himself. Acclaimed for making outer space accessible to millions, and for infusing a sense of wonder into our collective consciousness not felt since humanity first walked on the Moon, Hadfield continues to bring the marvels of science and space travel to everyone he encounters.

Hadfield has flown three space missions, built two space stations, performed two spacewalks, crewed the Shuttle and Soyuz, and in 2013 named the commander of the International Space Station for six months off planet.

Formerly NASA’s director of operations, Hadfield is a heavily decorated astronaut, engineer, and military fighter/test pilot whose many awards include the Order of Canada, the Meritorious Service Cross, and the NASA Exceptional Service Medal. He was named the Top Test Pilot in both the US Air Force and the US Navy, and was inducted into Canada’s Aviation Hall of Fame.

An internationally bestselling author, Hadfield has written four books: An Astronaut’s Guide to Life on Earth; You Are Here; his children’s book, The Darkest Dark; and the critically acclaimed The Apollo Murders — a thriller set in space and his first fiction novel. Hadfield also released a musical album, Space Sessions: Songs From a Tin Can, and is featured on for his talk, “What I Learned from Going Blind in Space”, which has been viewed more than 11 million times.

Hadfield is the co-creator and host of the internationally acclaimed BBC series Astronauts: Do You Have What It Takes?, as well as the co-host, with actor Will Smith, of National Geographic’s One Strange Rock, directed by Darren Aronofsky. He also produces the celebrated Rare Earth series on YouTube and is the creator of the on-stage celebration Generator, which combines science, comedy, and music.

Additionally, Hadfield is an adjunct professor at the University of Waterloo and with Masterclass online, an adviser to SpaceX and Virgin Galactic, and chair of the board of the Open Lunar Foundation. His keynote presentations have been called “an astonishing display of visual storytelling” by Harvard Business Review.

“Good morning, Earth!” (“Bonjour la Terre!”) C’est ainsi que le colonel Chris Hadfield débutait chaque matin ses sessions sur Twitter pendant son séjour de cinq mois à bord de la Station spatiale internationale. Au terme d’une carrière d’astronaute ayant duré 21 ans, au cours de laquelle il a participé à trois vols dans l’espace, le colonel Hadfield est devenu une célébrité mondiale en canalisant le pouvoir des médias sociaux pour rendre l’espace accessible à tous, en y réinjectant au passage un sens de l’émerveillement qui n’avait pas été ressenti par les citoyens de la Terre depuis les premiers pas de l’Homme sur la Lune. Maintenant considéré comme l’astronaute le plus connu depuis Neil Armstrong, Chris Hadfield continue de promouvoir les merveilles de la science et de l’espace auprès de tous ceux qu’il rencontre.

Le colonel Hadfield a inscrit plusieurs premières au palmarès de l’histoire du Canada dans l’espace. En 1992, il a été sélectionné par l’Agence spatiale canadienne pour entreprendre un entraînement de spécialiste de mission de la NASA – devenant à ce titre le premier astronaute canadien entièrement qualifié pour opérer les systèmes de la navette spatiale. Trois ans plus tard, à bord de la navette Atlantis, Hadfield a été le premier Canadien à opérer le Bras canadien dans l’espace, ainsi que le premier Canadien à visiter un vaisseau spatial russe alors qu’il contribuait à la construction de la station spatiale Mir. En 2001, à bord de la navette Endeavour, le colonel Hadfield est devenu le premier Canadien à marcher dans l’espace alors qu’il effectuait deux sorties extravéhiculaires pour installer le Canadarm2 sur la station spatiale. En 2013, il devenait le commandant de la Station spatiale internationale – à ce jour, le premier et seul Canadien à prendre le commandement d’un vaisseau spatial habité.

Au cours d’une carrière présentant de multiples facettes, le colonel Hadfield a, entre autres, intercepté des bombardiers soviétiques au-dessus de l’espace aérien du Canada, vécu au fond de l’océan, agi en tant que Directeur des opérations de la NASA en Russie, et enregistré des vidéos à caractère scientifique et musical qui ont été visionnées par des centaines de millions d’internautes.

Décoré de nombreuses fois à titre d’astronaute, d’ingénieur et de pilote, le colonel Hadfield s’est vu décerné plusieurs médailles, parmi lesquelles celle de l’Ordre du Canada, celle de l’Ordre de l’Ontario, la Meritorious Service Cross, et la NASA Exceptional Service Medal. Il a été nommé meilleur pilote d’essai (Top Test Pilot) à la fois par la US Air Force et par la US Navy, et il a été intronisé au Temple de la renommée de l’Aviation du Canada. Auteur du bestseller international Guide d’un astronaute pour la vie sur Terre, Chris Hadfield a été commémoré sur des timbres émis par Postes Canada, sur des pièces d’or et d’argent frappées par la Monnaie royale canadienne, ainsi que sur le nouveau billet de banque canadien de cinq dollars (qui célèbre également ses collègues astronautes Steve MacLean et Dave Williams).

Extreme Leadership

Commanding a spaceship takes superb leadership. The vehicle is complex, the team is international, the crew is on their own, and the stakes are at their highest — huge financial consequences and perpetual life or death situations.

Only one Canadian has ever held that command — Colonel Chris Hadfield. Through his 25 years spent in the Royal Canadian Air Force and 21 years with the Canadian Space Agency and NASA, he has developed and honed leadership theories and practices that have taken him to the very top.

In this keynote, Hadfield combines fundamental leadership theories and original insights with examples from his own experiences as a US Navy top test pilot, NASA’s Director of Operations in Russia, NASA Astronaut Chief of Space Station Operations, and as a Commander of the International Space Station.

Hadfield has been an instructor in crew resource management, as well as a teacher in all phases of astronaut/groundcrew team development. He is also a three-time internationally bestselling author and his book, An Astronaut’s Guide to Life on Earth, is regularly used by students and instructors around the world.

An immensely experienced teacher, speaker, and leader, Hadfield will help your team lead more effectively.

Preparing for the Unexpected: How to Manage Through Complexity and Change

Spaceflight is an unforgiving business, with industry success riding on every launch and event. Being a commander of a spaceship means facing the highest of stakes — human lives, irreplaceable and expensive equipment, and worldwide scrutiny.

Having commanded the International Space Station for months off planet, Colonel Chris Hadfield is experienced in managing people, complexity, and change under extreme circumstances. Surrounded by life-threatening risk, his daily routine was to prepare for and solve worse-case scenarios, from both a team and leadership perspective.

Hadfield draws from his experiences and lessons learned during his 21 years in the astronaut corps to share the best strategies and tactics to help individuals, teams, and leaders prepare for and meet the challenges of our rapidly changing world. Key topics include managing stress, leading under pressure, encouraging collaboration amongst diverse teams, redefining norms, and more. Using multiple examples from his tremendous career, he illuminates the necessity for both preparation and reaction to complex change.

Stories Behind "The Apollo Murders"

Bestselling author Colonel Chris Hadfield’s latest book, The Apollo Murders, is a Cold War thriller set in 1973 that explores the dark heart of the space race. While it’s Hadfield’s first fiction book, the inspiration behind it is based on true stories that only an insider could ever know.

Join Hadfield on a journey through the fascinating, technical, and thrilling stories behind the space race that he discovered while researching for his new fiction series. Hadfield combines these with his own personal stories of launching into space, living six months off-planet in the darkest dark, and hanging on to the outside of a spacecraft while orbiting the Earth at 17,000 miles per hour, to give audiences a perspective of what it’s really like to be an astronaut. Starting from the beginning when landing on the moon was a dream and an international competition and ending in today’s landscape of international cooperation, Hadfield shows what is possible and what might have been.


Colonel Chris Hadfield has worked with countless students and teachers, from pre-school to post-doctoral, for decades. Speaking in schools and at education conferences throughout his 35-year-career as an engineer, pilot, and astronaut, his rare mixture of personal experience, memorable ideas, and a warm, fun, interactive style has influenced a generation. Most recently, his extensive teachings from Earth orbit, recorded on-board the International Space Station, continue to be seen by millions via YouTube.

Hadfield strongly believes in the necessity to give every student the tools and the inspiration to succeed. His face and accomplishments are in Canadian science textbooks as both a role model and clear example of where STEM education can lead. Using real-world examples from his unique experiences, he enables audiences to see beyond their normal horizons, and helps give them the tools and ideas for personal growth and achievement in learning.

A Musical Evening with Chris Hadfield

Colonel Chris Hadfield shares a selection of stories, images, songs, and ideas in a musical presentation that delights audiences of all ages.

Performing songs like his evocative “Beyond the Terra”, which looks away from the land to the skies, Hadfield ties his presentation together with incredible tales from over the course of his career, including his experience as the ISS commander.

Suitable for audiences big, small, and in-between, Hadfield customizes his performance to his audience.

Celebrity Services

Colonel Chris Hadfield is represented by The Spotlight Agency for sponsorships, endorsements, public relations and media spokesperson campaigns, product launches, voiceovers, celebrity appearances, and more.  Please visit The Spotlight Agency for more details.