19 December 2019

Sethuraman Panchanathan Nominated as Next NSF Director

This post is adapted from a National Science Foundation press statement:

Sethuraman PanchanathanOn 18 December 2019 President Donald J. Trump announced his intention to nominate Dr. Sethuraman "Panch" Panchanathan to serve as the 15th director of the National Science Foundation (NSF). Dr. Panchanathan has been a member of the National Science Board, which establishes NSF policy and advises both the agency and the president, since 2014. Currently, Dr. Panchanathan leads the knowledge enterprise development at Arizona State University (ASU), which advances research, innovation, strategic partnerships, entrepreneurship, and global and economic development at ASU.

Panchanathan is a Fellow of the National Academy of Inventors and a Fellow of the Canadian Academy of Engineering. He is also the Fellow of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) and the Society of Optical Engineering. He is currently serving as the Chair-Elect in the Council on Research within the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities. Panchanathan was the editor-in-chief of the IEEE Multimedia Magazine and is also an editor or associate editor of many other journals.

Panchanathan would succeed Dr. France Córdova when her six-year term as NSF director ends in 2020. NSF director is a Senate-confirmed position.

Dr. Córdova issued the following statement: “For five years, Dr. Sethuraman Panchanathan has been a bold, energizing presence on the National Science Board and he was a leader in every sense of the word in the research community prior to that. I was delighted to learn that the White House named him as nominee to serve as the next director of the National Science Foundation. This position requires the ability to connect with all stakeholders in the US science and engineering community, walking the fine line between serving and leading. Panch has the character and knowledge that make him an ideal fit for the job. As my own term draws to a close, I am heartened at the idea of Panch as my successor.”

Related article from the American Institute of Physics: