U.S. President Barack Obama on Aug. 1 nominated former NASA astronaut Kathryn Sullivan to become the permanent head of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). The position is subject to Senate confirmation. 

Sullivan, a three-flight space shuttle veteran who in 1984 became the first American woman to conduct a spacewalk, has been acting NOAA administrator since Janet Lubchenco stepped down in February. Sullivan has previously served as NOAA chief scientist and deputy administrator.