Peter Giles Selected as One of the Top 16 Candidates For Space Agency Campaign
Peter Giles, a 1996 Olympian and Canada’s Assistant Chef de Mission at the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games, was introduced today as one of the top 16 candidates for the Canadian Space Agency’s (CSA)
National Astronaut Recruitment Campaign.
At a Toronto press conference, CSA President Steve MacLean introduced the top 16 candidates who are participating in the campaign and provided insight into the process of selecting the next two members of Canada’s Astronaut Corps.
Giles, a native of Lake Echo, N.S., was one of a record 5,351 applicants for the National Astronaut Recruitment Campaign, which was launched in May 2008. Over the course of the previous months, the CSA has interviewed selected candidates and put them through a series of medical exams and physical and skills tests. The candidates will continue to undergo further exams and testing in the coming weeks.
Two among the 16 top candidates will be chosen to join Canada’s Astronaut Corps in May 2009, with the opportunity to represent Canada in future space exploration missions.
A 1996 Olympian in Kayak, Giles was a member of the Canadian national Kayak team from 1988 to 1996. The 38-year-old was also a triple bronze medallist in the sport at the 1991 Pan American Games.
During his high-performance career, Giles helped his team record a seventh-place finish in the K4 1,000-metre event at the 1996 Olympic Games in Atlanta. He also helped them achieve a pair of top-10 results at the 1995 World Championship in Duisburg, Germany.
Following his athletic career, Giles has remained an active member in the Canadian sport community. Since 2003, he has had extensive involvement with the Canadian Olympic Committee (COC), serving as a representative on both the COC’s Athletes’ Council and Awards and Recognition Committee. He is also the President of CanoeKayak Canada.
As Assistant Chef de Mission for Canada in Beijing, Giles worked alongside Chef de Mission Sylvie Bernier in providing leadership to all Canadian athletes competing at the 2008 Olympic Games.
Giles, 38, holds a PhD in Applied Physics from Stanford University in California and is currently a Principal Systems Engineer with General Dynamics Canada.
More information on the CSA’s National Astronaut Recruitment Campaign can be found by visiting: www.asc-csa.gc.ca.