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Nominated Office: USNC-IAU

Affiliation: Department of Astronomy, University of Wisconsin-Madison

Position/title: W. W. Morgan & Rupple Bascom Professor of Astronomy

PhD institution: University of Wisconsin-Madison (1972)

Areas of scientific interest:

  • Observational studies of the evolution of galaxies as astrophysical systems
  • Multi-messenger diagnostics of conditions in astrophysical systems
  • Evolutionary processes associated with binary stars

AAS positions & dates:

  • Editor-in-Chief, The Astronomical Journal (2005-2015)
  • AAS Councilor (1987-1990)

Other relevant positions & experience:

  • President, IAU Commission 28 “Galaxies” (2012-15)
  • Development of international partnerships, including the Gemini Observatories and IceCube Project
  • Scientific collaborations in Africa, Europe, Latin America, and Asia
  • Visiting faculty, Jubilee Professor, Chalmers University Sweden, Visiting Erskine Fellow, University of Canterbury, New Zealand
  • Hubble Space Telescope Time Allocation Committee, panel and TAC member
  • Proposal reviewer for science agencies in Brazil, Germany, India, Israel, Republic of South Africa, Sweden, and the United Kingdom
  • Member of Advisory Committee to the Center for Astronomy, University of Heidelberg
  • Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science 1991

Candidate Statement: Astronomy in the 21st century is an increasingly international enterprise in which the U.S. does and should play a major role. Collaborations across the globe are developing new ideas, as well as constructing and operating public and private observatories. The global growth of our field also can be seen in the expansion of the IAU, which now has about 12300 members, 22% of whom come from the U.S. We are the largest component of the IAU fortunate that it offers the U.S. community a portal that fosters scientific collaboration beyond our borders. The U.S. National Committee is our formal connection to the IAU and therefore seeks to optimize ways that our community can benefit from participation in the IAU and works to insure that our relationship with the IAU is productive and positive. My interests include exploring ways to build stronger connections between the IAU and U.S. astronomers, especially for scientists who are in early career phases. It is also important to further develop mechanisms that will allow us to more readily and effectively participate in the wider world of astronomy, both in terms of intellectual engagement and the shared use of research facilities. There is much to be gained from improved connections to our colleagues throughout the world via the IAU, and the USNC-IAU should facilitate this exchange while also keeping our national interests in mind.