Claudie Haigneré was born in Burgundy, France. A rheumatology and neurosciences graduate and practitioner, Haigneré became an astronaut candidate to the French space agency in 1985. She has had two space missions as a European Space Agency (ESA) astronaut to the Mir space station in 1996, and to the International Space Station in 2001. Haigneré held several French political positions between 2002 and 2005, including minister for research and new technologies, and minister for European affairs. Since 2015, Haigneré has worked with the European Space Agency on its research and development plans for the construction of a village on the moon. Haigneré is a Grand Officer of the French Legion of Honor.