Duchess Harris shares story of human computers with La Crosse


For the first 10 years Miriam D. Mann worked at NASA’s predecessor, she was legally prohibited from working alongside her white co-workers, according to her granddaughter, Duchess Harris.

A Twin Cities-based author and professor, Harris shared the story Tuesday of her grandmother, who was one of the first African-American women to work at NASA. She was joined at the Martin Luther King Day event for about 800 La Crosse area middle-schoolers by University of Wisconsin-La Crosse associate professor of physics Taviare Hawkins, the 50th African-American woman to ever receive a doctorate in physics, and senior Adrienne Hester, who will be the first black woman to receive a degree in physics from UW-L when she graduates next year.

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