Dr. Joseph P. Allen was born June 27, 1937 in Crawfordsville, Indiana. He earned his BA in Physics and Mathematics from DePauw University (1959) and an MS and PhD in physics from Yale University (1961, 1965). A winner of a Fulbright Scholarship to Germany (1959), Allen began his career as a research associate in the Nuclear Physics Laboratory at the University of Washington. He also served as staff physicist at the Nuclear Structure Laboratory at Yale University in 1965 and 1966 and as guest research associate at the Brookhaven National Laboratory, 1963-1967.
Allen was selected as a scientist-astronaut by NASA in August 1967. He served as NASA Assistant Administrator for Legislative Affairs in Washington, D.C. and then later as a mission specialist on STS-5 on Columbia (November 11-16, 1982) and STS-51A on Discovery (November 8-16,1984). After leaving NASA, he became the Chief Executive Officer of Space Industries International, Inc. and Chairman of Veridian. Allen is also a member of American Physical Society, American Astronautical Society, American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics, American Association for the Advancement of Science, Phi Beta Kappa, Beta Theta Pi, Sigma Xi, and Phi Eta Sigma.