A Black woman notably known as Deep-Sea Dawn descended to the planet’s deepest point to bring back the first high-resolution mapping of Challenger Deep.
According to Forbes, Dawn WrightChief scientist at the Environmental Systems Research Institute in marine geography, he is the first African American to reach the bottom of the ocean floor.
She successfully completed the historic deep sea journey to the Challenger Deep. She hopes her story will inspire young generations.
“It’s really important to show young people that these kinds of things can be done, and are not off limits just because you’re Black or a woman,” Wright, 61, told the magazine..
Wright’s mission to becoming an oceanographer started as early as eight years old. After falling in love with the ocean from Maui, Hawaii, Wright was driven to travel the untraveled path.
“It was partly fueled by the Apollo 11 mission,” said Wright, according to CBS News. “If those men could land on the moon, I thought, ‘Well, why can’t I go the opposite direction and explore the oceans?’”
Wright faced challenges as a marine technician having spent a lot of time on ships with men who didn’t validate her role. These positions were very rare in the 1970s and 1980s.
“I spent several years at sea as a marine technician. And there were men on the ship that I was on who didn’t believe that women should be there…That is the story, an age-old story. It’s still an issue,” she said, per the news outlet.
Black women today still feel the effects of racism occupational Segregation is a problem in patriarchal industries. Wright is one of very few people who is proving her vision and valuable work.
The Challenger Deep is the distance between the surface of the ocean and the Mariana trench’s deepest point (located in the western Pacific east of the Philippines). Wright traveled in the Limiting Factor (the only human-operated vehicle that could complete the journey) and was immersed in darkness for 10 hours.
She is a multidisciplinary artist, specializing in seabed mapping as well as imaging. Wright is now back and analyzing her work.