AAS 2019 Election

The 2019 AAS election is for the following positions:

  • President
  • Vice-President
  • Secretary
  • At-Large Trustee
  • Nominating Committee member
  • USNC-IAU member
Those elected will take office immediately after the AAS Business Meeting in June 2019.

Instructions:

The 2019 election is now open and will close on Friday, 8 February 2019.

To vote, you will need your AAS member login ID (which defaults to your membership number) and your password. If you cannot remember your username, please contact membership@aas.org, or call 202-328-2010 and press 4 to reach our membership department, or go to members.aas.org and click the "forgot my username" link.

Current time: Thursday, 17 October 2019, 04:08:48 am EDT (-04:00 GMT)

Voting opened: Tuesday, 18 December 2018, 12:01:00 am EST (-05:00 GMT)
Voting closed: Friday, 8 February 2019, 04:59:00 pm EST (-05:00 GMT)

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President

Description: The President serves on the Board of Trustees first as President-Elect (1 year), then as President (2 years), and finally as Past President (1 year). The President presides over Board meetings and the Annual Business Meeting; represents the AAS at official functions and before other organizations; serves when required as the official spokesperson for the AAS; and appoints members to various AAS committees.
Term Elected For: President-Elect (1 year), President (2 years), Past President (1 year)
Currently Serving:
  • Megan Donahue, President
  • Christine Jones, Past President

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Paula Szkody


Biography

Professional Title/Position

Professor

Degrees and Education

University of Washington, PhD (1975)

Affiliations

University of Washington

Research Areas, Topics, and Interests

  • Cataclysmic Variables
  • Pulsating White Dwarfs
  • Binary Evolution
  • Sky Surveys
  • Observational Techniques
  • Astronomical Publishing

Services, Roles, and Activities

  • AAS Publications Committee (2016 – 2021)
  • AAS e-books Board (2015 – 2019)
  • AAS Journals Taskforce (2014)
  • AAS Vice President (2012 – 2015)
  • ApJ Scientific Editor (2002 – 2005)
  • Van Biesbroeck Prize Committee (2001 – 2003, Chair, 2003)
  • AAS Councilor (1996 – 1999)
  • HEAD Executive Committee (1996 – 1997)
  • AJ Cannon Advisory Committee (1986 – 1991, Chair 1988 – 1990)

Professional Experience and Positions

  • NASA Senior Review (2016, 1996)
  • Astronomy Astrophysics Advisory Committee (2012 – 2015)
  • PASP Editor-in-Chief (2006 – 2012)
  • AAVSO President (2007 – 2009, VP 2006 – 2007, Council 2004 – 2010)
  • AURA Observatories Council (2004 – 2010, Chair 2007 – 2010)
  • AURA Solar Observatories Council (2001 – 2004)
  • IAU Commission 42 President (2000 – 2003, VP 1997 – 2000, OC, 1991 – 2006)
  • ASP Board of Directors (1988 – 1992, Pub Board 2001 – 2003)
  • AAAS Nominating Committee (1990 – 1993, Chair 1993, Member-at-Large 1995 – 1999)

Candidate Statement

I am grateful to be nominated to run for President of the AAS, an organization in which I have been a member since graduate school. While the society has remained true to its mission to share scientific understanding of the universe throughout those years, the methods employed to accomplish this mission have progressed with the times. The most prominent activities of the AAS include being at the forefront of astronomical publishing, and arranging meetings that present the latest research and engage all constituents from students to retired astronomers.

Having been a Scientific editor for ApJ, Editor-in-Chief of PASP, serving on the AAS Journals Taskforce, and currently on the AAS Publications Committee and the AAS e-books board, I have witnessed the complexities of publication from many angles, and participated in the efficient reorganization of our society journals so that there is a common input and coordinated review process. The entire field of publication is rapidly changing; it is vital for the AAS to foresee changes and continue its past and current role as an innovator in astronomical publishing. The recent additions of e-books, NOVA, and Research Notes bode well for the willingness of AAS to try new things.

Having served as AAS Vice-President, arranging speakers, town halls, workshops, for three years of meetings has given me perspective on what makes a good meeting. As the meetings grow ever larger, the debate continues to rage as to whether short talks are worthwhile and how all the posters can be viewed, but the fact remains that the AAS is likely the only large organization that allows all members to give a talk if they so desire. The advent of iPosters allows interactive input and alternate viewing. The undergrad reception has grown tremendously in the past years, as has the number of students presenting their research. The large attendance permits job-seekers to meet up with employers, and old-timers to catch up with past students, postdocs, and colleagues. The ability to accommodate growth and fulfill the needs of all members will continue to be a challenge.

Having been employed at a community college, a private university, and three large public universities (as lecturer, research associate, research professor, full professor), I am familiar with struggles to obtain jobs and grant funding in a highly competitive world, as well as the changes in the education environment as technology advances. The AAS can help prepare upcoming students for success in the jobs they choose.

The future of our society and that of the entire scientific community hinges on our ability to be prepared for what the future brings. To me, this means being able to adapt to the changing publication arena, preparing our grad students and postdocs to enter a changing job market, and providing the information and collective advocacy of the science of the universe that a large body like the AAS can do. I hope to be able to use my past experience to enable this to happen.

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Chick Woodward


Biography

Professional Title/Position

Professor

Degrees and Education

University of Rochester, PhD (1987)

Affiliations

University of Minnesota - Minnesota Institute for Astrophysics

Research Areas, Topics, and Interests

  • Exoplanet characterization
  • Comets and small bodies in the Solar System
  • Dust
  • Novae and Variable Stars
  • Infrared instrumentation
  • Space missions and telescope development

Services, Roles, and Activities

  • Vice President (2018 – 2015)
  • Councilor (2008 – 2011)
  • Chair, WorldWide Telescope Advisory Committee (2017 – 2018)
  • Member, Ethics Sub-Committee (2016 – 2017)
  • Chair and Member, Committee on the Status of Minorities in Astronomy (2000 – 2004)

Professional Experience and Positions

  • Member, NASA Astrophysics Advisory Committee, Astrophysics Div., Sci. Mission Directorate, NASA HQ (2018 – present)
  • Chair, SOFIA Users Committee (2018 – present)
  • Board Vice-Chair, Large Binocular Telescope Corp. (501[c](3)) (2011 – present)
  • Member, Astronomy & Astrophysics Advisory Committee (AAAC) (2010 – 2012)
  • Member, Astro2010 OIR Decadale Panel (2009 – 2010)
  • Board Chair, International Gemini Observatory Board (2008 – 2010)
  • Member, Space Studies Board, National Academies of Science / National Research Council (2007 – 2011)
  • Board Member (US Representative), International Gemini Observatory Board (2002 – 2007)
  • Chair, National Optical Astronomical Observatory Users Committee (2000 – 2003)
  • Member, NASA Space Infrared Telescope Facility (aka Spitzer) Science Users Committee (1998 – 2002)

Candidate Statement

The exploration of the universe is a story of human curiosity and imagination. As an organization, the AAS advocates for individuals dedicated to seeking a better scientific understanding of the cosmos in a variety of disciplines and to communicating these frontier discoveries to the public. The AAS, through a range of activities, also serves as a catalyst for consensus building within the professional community. I am humbled by the nomination to stand as President of this member-driven institution of science, innovation, equity, and inclusion.

Our Society faces many challenges and must adapt to the evolving landscape of science to provide ongoing national leadership. If elected President, I will continue to move the AAS toward inclusivity, putting forth initiatives to provide leadership opportunities for early-career members and those whose presence and voices traditionally have been under-represented. We must embrace our diversity and provide spaces where a wide range of conversations, exchange of scientific ideas, and consensus building can occur with mutual respect. This goal is the core of our Society’s relevance and growth as we seek to advance scientific knowledge of the universe and communicate its importance. A second goal will be to pivot our Society’s focus and energy towards advancing science literacy and science advocacy within the public conversation and championing the importance of fundamental science to the nation and stakeholders. This renewed emphasis on the AAS’s science advocacy role will have high impact as our communities embark upon Decadal Survey processes. Our Society should be a leader in enhancing the pre-eminence of scientific discourse in a currently complex environment informed by a disparate worldview. Lastly, the AAS must enhance members’ engagement with our mission. Here, we need to understand more clearly the needs and expectations of our professional membership, divisions, and diversity/advocacy committees to enable the AAS to create actionable, relevant, and outcome driven value propositions.

Guided by voices and aspirations of AAS members, passionate volunteers, and professional staff, we can together progress an organization that is scientifically creative, publicly responsive, professionally relevant, and is our collective home.

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Vice-President

Description: The Vice-Presidents, as representatives of the Board of Trustees, are responsible for the overall scientific content of the Society's major meetings. They select invited speakers, review proposals for special sessions, and support and advise the Executive Officer in maintaining the scientific quality of the program.
Term Elected For: 3 years
Currently Serving:
  • James D. Lowenthal, Senior Vice-President
  • Michael Strauss, Second Vice-President
  • Joan Schmelz, Third Vice-President

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Geoffrey C. Clayton


Biography

Professional Title/Position

Ball Family Distinguished Professor, Physics & Astronomy

Degrees and Education

University of Toronto, PhD (1983)

Affiliations

Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge

Research Areas, Topics, and Interests

  • Circumstellar and interstellar dust in the Local Group
  • Dust formation and evolution in core-collapse supernovae
  • The evolution of R Coronae Borealis Stars
  • Binary white-dwarf mergers

Services, Roles, and Activities

  • Sustainability Committee (2014 – 2019, Chair 2017 – 2019)
  • Funds for Astronomical Meetings: Outreach to Underrepresented Scientists (FAMOUS) Grants Committee (2014 – 2019)
  • Solar Eclipse Taskforce (2014 – 2017)
  • AAS Councilor (2013 – 2016)
  • Committee on the Status of Women in Astronomy (1992 – 1995, 2006 – 2009, Chair 2007 – 2009)
  • Chretien International Research Grant Committee (2002 – 2003, Chair 2003)
  • Warner/Pierce Prize Committee (2000 – 2001, Chair 2001)
  • Small Research Grant Committee (2000)

Professional Experience and Positions

  • LSU College of Science Diversity Committee (2017 – 2019)
  • IUE, SMEX, FUSE, ADP, NOAO, NSF, HST, SST Review Panels (1991 – 2017)
  • Editorial Board of the Journal of the AAVSO (2011 – 2019)
  • Hubble Fellowship Committee (2016)
  • IAU Working Group on Women in Astronomy (2010 – 2015)
  • Organizing committee for Women in Astronomy and Space Science Conference (2009)
  • Council for the American Association of Variable Star Observers (2002 – 2003)
  • Visiting Senior Scientist, NASA Headquarters (1988 – 1990)

Candidate Statement

In last year's election, only 16% of AAS members cast a vote. This year, the contest for Vice-President of the Society is between two old white men. Not only that, but Stephen Unwin and I were the losing candidates for the same position last year. So, who cares? Can't they find different candidates who might better represent the diversity of the AAS? It's a good question to ask. But I believe the answer is that we all need to work together to improve diversity, and that we all have something to contribute. Both Stephen and I care deeply about the AAS, and the critical role it plays in astronomy and in the promotion of science education in our country. Please read our statements and vote for the person who you feel will do the best job for the Society.

In these uncertain times where issues like climate change seem to be threatening the future of humanity, I feel that the AAS is more important than ever. Maintaining and improving scientific literacy in the United States has never been more crucial. We must continue to make the point that the payoff for tax-payer investments in the areas of science education and basic research is huge, and that astronomy, in particular, has the ability to inspire great interest in science.

The AAS is on the forefront of promoting diversity and inclusion in science. The Vice-Presidents are responsible for planning the programs of the Society's scientific meetings and also act as advisors to the President. Planning the scientific program and the selection of speakers is important. The speakers must be selected in such a way that we not only show off our best science but also show our diversity and inclusion.

I will bring a great variety of life experience if elected as Vice-President. I immigrated to the US as a newly minted PhD, and have lived and worked here ever since. I spent over a decade on soft money, and two years at NASA as a program officer before getting a tenure-track position. I have been a professor at LSU for 22 years and I am still trying to become a better scientist, a better mentor, and a better teacher. I have served the AAS in a number of positions including Council member, and chair of the CSWA and the Sustainability Committee.

I have had a career-long interest in increasing diversity in astronomy and am keenly interested in assuring inclusion in science for everyone. However, there is a real danger that the gains we have made as a Society in increasing the diversity of our membership may be lost. Our home institutions, as well as our local, state, and federal governments need to pursue policies designed to be open and welcoming to all. If elected, I will work through the Society to maintain and enhance the key areas of science education, basic research, diversity, and inclusion.

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Stephen C. Unwin


Biography

Professional Title/Position

Principal Scientist

Degrees and Education

Cambridge University, PhD (1980)

Affiliations

Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology

Research Areas, Topics, and Interests

  • Space-based instrumentation and mission development for astronomy
  • Extrasolar planets, stellar debris disks, biogenic ices
  • Emission processes in active galactic nuclei
  • Science policy

Services, Roles, and Activities

  • AAS Membership Committee (2018 – 2019)
  • AAS Agent (2016 – present)
  • AAS Council (2014 – 2017)
  • AAS Task Force on Meetings (Chair 2015 – 2016)
  • AAS representative on US National Committee of the IAU (2016 – 2019)
  • Committee on Astronomy and Public Policy (CAPP) (2015 – 2017)
  • Division on Dynamical Astronomy (DDA) Committee (2000 – 2002 and 2006 – 2007, and Chair 2006 – 2007)
  • DDA Brouwer Award Selection Committee (Chair 2010)
  • Division member of DDA and DPS

Professional Experience and Positions

  • NASA Exoplanet Exploration Program, Deputy Program Scientist (2005 – 2015)
  • JPL Center for Exoplanet Science, Deputy Director (2005 – 2011)
  • NASA proposal review panels (1994, 1998 – 1999, 2011 – 2017)
  • NASA Keck Time Allocation Committee (2013)
  • NSF Management Review Committee of Arecibo Observatory (2007)
  • NSF proposal reviewer (2000 – 2005)
  • NASA Space Interferometry Mission, Deputy Project Scientist (2000 – 2010)
  • Arecibo Users Committee (2000 – 2003, Chair 2003)
  • NRAO Users Committee (1992 – 1995, Chair 1995)

Candidate Statement

I want to be Vice-President of the AAS because I believe strongly that the astronomy community needs an organization that represents — and will act on — the collective concerns and issues of its membership. Astronomers should be able to look to the AAS as the public face of our profession. It can and should take a visible stand on issues that affect astronomy — including diversity, inclusion, and the ability to pursue research. For instance, the AAS should advocate for agencies such as NASA and NSF to give more priority to research support. And it can do more to foster opportunities for rewarding astronomy careers, especially in non-academic organizations — my own astronomy career path in an engineering environment has been non-traditional. More broadly, the AAS should be seen as a resource for young scientists wanting a career in astronomy, and providing support for scientists using astronomy to promote scientific literacy in the US.

Serving on the Council a few years ago convinced me of many ways the AAS provides value to its members and the astronomy community. I chaired a Meetings Task Force that polled members for input and made many recommendations, including enhancing networking, controlling the cost of attending Meetings, and selecting appropriate meeting locations. And I worked with the Committee for Sexual-Orientation & Gender Minorities in Astronomy on setting policy for meeting locations that will not discriminate. That's an example of why AAS Committees are important — they allow us to fully explore complicated issues, and to ensure the Society's policies and actions reflect the membership.

Open two-way communication with membership is key to keeping the AAS relevant in the age of social media and instant reactions to events. This includes setting policies that guide the AAS in responding to issues that our members face. The Society's recent governance changes will help, by allowing issues to be resolved more quickly.

A specific task of Vice Presidents is to plan the Society's Meetings and select prize lectures. Making a meeting schedule that includes all the events that members need and want (including topical sessions and career events) is the challenge — invited speakers should reflect diversity in our profession, and talks should be productive, informative, and fun!

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Secretary

Description:
  • Voting Member of the Board of Trustees;
  • Preparing and distributing the agendas and minutes of Board Meetings;
  • Official signor for the AAS;
  • Sits on AIP Governing Board (when elected);
  • Member and Secretary, USNC-IAU;
  • Collects, counts, and certifies ballots for all Society elections;
  • Solicits nominations for AAS awards; and
  • Selects session chairs for meetings.
Term Elected For: 3 years
Currently Serving: George F. (Fritz) Benedict

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Alice K. B. Monet


Biography

Degrees and Education

University of Virginia, PhD (1984)

Affiliations

US Naval Observatory (retired)

Research Areas, Topics, and Interests

  • Education and public outreach in astronomy and space science
  • Use of planetariums for STEM education
  • Development of software and web-based tools for astronomical applications
  • Astrometry and physical characterization of small bodies of the Solar System, including near-Earth objects, asteroids, comets, planetary satellites, and KBOs
  • Earth orientation, crustal motion, and prediction of variations in the Length of Day (LOD)

Services, Roles, and Activities

  • DDA Committee (1990 – 92)
  • DDA Vice-Chair (1992 – 1993)
  • Brouwer Award Selection Committee (1993)
  • DDA Chair (1993 – 1994)
  • DDA Committee (2005 – 2007)
  • DDA LOC, DDA Secretary (2008 – 2014, 2009)
  • DDA Treasurer (2015 – 2018)

Professional Experience and Positions

Founding member, board member, and chief executive officer (for 7 years) of a small non-profit organization supporting STEM education in local public schools (2010 – present)

Candidate Statement

I've been a member of the AAS for just over 40 years, and have served in every possible office of the Division on Dynamical Astronomy during that time. I have also been a member of the Division of Planetary Sciences and the Historical Astronomy Division on occasion. Over the past decade, I've participated regularly in the leadership meetings at the AAS Executive Office, and had the opportunity to work with many of the staff members of the AAS, as well as the officers of the other divisions. Over the years, the Society has grown bigger and more complex, and has expanded its role beyond publications and meeting organization. I feel that with my extensive experience as a member and officer, I'm well prepared to contribute to the society as Secretary. In addition, my experiences working for many years as one of the few female astronomers at the Naval Observatory have made me sensitive to the continuing challenges faced by women in our profession. My education and public outreach work have made me keenly aware of the barriers to greater participation in the sciences by under-represented communities. I would welcome the opportunity to put my skills and experience to work supporting the AAS as needed, including addressing the issues of inclusion and diversity in astronomy.

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Kristin Kruse Madsen


Biography

Professional Title/Position

Staff Scientist

Degrees and Education

Niels Bohr Institute, University of Copenhagen, Denmark, PhD (2007)

Affiliations

California Institute of Technology

Research Areas, Topics, and Interests

  • X-ray instrumentation; detector and multilayer coatings applications for optics
  • Supernova remnants; Pulsar wind nebulae
  • Black Hole physics; accretion geometry and coronae
  • Dust scattering haloes
  • Inter-instrumental cross-calibration

Services, Roles, and Activities

  • AAS member since 2015
  • AAS HEAD member since 2015
  • HEAD executive committee member (2017 – 2020)

Professional Experience and Positions

  • Chair of the International Astronomical Consortium of High Energy Calibration (IACHEC)
  • Service on numerous telescope time allocation and proposal review committees

Candidate Statement

I am very honored to be nominated as a candidate for the position of Secretary. I am relatively new to the AAS family and the reason for that was that early on in my career I only had a very vague idea what AAS could do for me. It really wasn't until I joined the HEAD committee that I became aware of the benefits and the work the AAS has done for the community, especially in leading the way for greater equality and addressing head-on the problems of harassment that unfortunately still persists in our working environment, and which often targets younger staff and students. I believe this is one of the AAS most important missions and I would like to see and promote a better connection to the younger members of our community. The AAS needs to continue being a champion for positive change, but the good work is not always reaching those who need to know about it. With my experience as a HEAD committee member I am well aware of the challenges we face reaching all of our community, and I would like to make that my mission and hope for your support.

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At-Large Trustee

Description: As members of the governing board of the AAS, At-Large Trustees have the legal responsibility to manage, direct, and control the affairs and property of the Society. Within the limits of the Bylaws, the Board of Trustees determines the policies of the Society and changes to them, and it has discretion in the disbursement of the Society's funds.
Term Elected For: 3 years
Currently Serving:
  • Adam Burgasser
  • Jessica Kirkpatrick
  • Stuart Vogel
  • Marcel Agüeros
  • Kelle Cruz
  • Kelsey Johnson
  • Tereasa Brainerd

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Tim Bastian


Biography

Professional Title/Position

Astronomer

Degrees and Education

University of Colorado, PhD (1987)

Affiliations

National Radio Astronomy Observatory

Research Areas, Topics, and Interests

  • Solar & heliospheric physics - chromosphere, corona, solar wind; energetic processes - flares, CMEs
  • Coronal magnetic fields, magnetic energy release
  • Late-type stars; exoplanets
  • Radiophysics - emission mechanisms, propagation phenomena, data inversion
  • Radio instrumentation - interferometry

Services, Roles, and Activities

  • AAS Committee on Light Pollution, Radio Interference, and Space Debris (2003 – 2005)
  • Scientific Editor, Astrophysical Journal (2003 – 2007)
  • AAS Publications Board (2013 – 2015)
  • AAS Publications Task Force (2014)
  • AAS Publications Transition Team (2015)
  • AAS Officer: Publications Board Chair (2016 – present)

Professional Experience and Positions

  • Member, National Academies SSB Committee on Solar and Space Physics (2013 – 2017)
  • Member, panel on Solar and Heliospheric Physics, Decadal Survey of Solar and Space Physics (2001 – 2002)
  • Member, panel on Solar and Heliospheric Physics, Decadal Survey of Solar and Space Physics (2011 – 2012)
  • Member and co-Chair, LWS working group on Ground-based Support of Solar Probe Plus (2014)
  • Chair, National Academies Assessment of the NSF Geospace Portfolio Review (2016)
  • Member, IAU Division E Steering Committee (2018 – present)
  • I have served on numerous SOCs, advisory panels, program committees, and steering committees
  • NRAO: Assistant Director for Science & Academic Affairs (2009 – 2011)
  • NRAO: Assistant Director for Observatory Science Operations (2012 – 2013)
  • NRAO: Assistant Director for Science Support and Research (2013 – 2017)

Candidate Statement

The AAS is an extraordinary professional organization, one that not only provides comprehensive services to its members, but one that is exercising leadership in ensuring that access, diversity, and inclusion are front and center in its thinking about the wider astronomy and astrophysics enterprise. It has, moreover, been proactive in developing a robust ethics and anti-harassment policy so that its professional gatherings are safe and productive. The AAS has also shown considerable vision in positioning its suite of premier journals for a successful future. It’s been my privilege to have served as Chair of the Publications Committee, participating in the development of a strategic plan and overseeing elements of its implementation. Still, while the AAS has enjoyed real success, it faces ongoing and inter-related challenges — in making the promise of diversity and inclusion a reality, in providing support and tools for its education mission, in bringing its varied membership together for scientific workshops and meetings, in its advocacy for astronomy and astrophysics to government policy makers, and in providing a premier suite of scientific journals to the wider community. I would be honored to serve as a Trustee, changing my focus from AAS Publications to the wider AAS mission and the many challenges that lie ahead.

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Hannah Jang-Condell


Biography

Professional Title/Position

Associate Professor

Degrees and Education

Harvard University, PhD (2004)

Affiliations

University of Wyoming

Research Areas, Topics, and Interests

  • Protoplanetary disks
  • Planet formation theory
  • Exoplanet detection and characterization

Services, Roles, and Activities

  • Committee on the Status of Women in Astronomy (2006 – 2012)

Professional Experience and Positions

  • Society of Physics Students National Council Member, Councilor for Zone 14 (2017 – 2020)
  • Steering Committee Member for NExSS (NASA's Nexus for Exoplanet System Science) (2015 – present)
  • Organizer of Habitable Worlds: A System Science Workshop in Laramie, WY, Nov 13-17, 2017
  • US Extremely Large Telescope Key Science Program Participant (2018 – present)
  • TESS Science Team Climate Committee Member (2018 – present)
  • PI on multiple NASA Grants (ATP/XRP/ADAP/EPSCOR)
  • HST Cycle 24 Peer Review Panel Member (2016)
  • Grant Proposal Panel Reviewer for NASA and NSF

Candidate Statement

I believe that one of the AAS's most important jobs is reducing the barriers to participation in astronomy. This includes both opening doors to entering the field as well as increasing opportunities for career development to keep young astronomers in the field.

It is particularly important for the AAS to welcome groups that have historically been marginalized in astronomy based on gender, race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, disability, or any other attribute irrelevant to excellence in astronomy. We should hold those who harass folks from these marginalized groups accountable for their actions and sanction them. My work on the Committee of the Status of Women in Astronomy (CSWA) informs my view that we should strengthen and support the committees and working groups devoted to diversity efforts (such as SGMA, CSMA, CSWA, and WGAD) and facilitate communication between them since many members hold multiple identities.

The AAS also helps its members by creating opportunities to advance their careers in a variety of ways, such as advertising employment opportunities, sponsoring networking events, awarding prizes, and giving opportunities to present science at meetings. The work done by the Committee on Employment is vital to maintaining a diverse and vibrant workforce in astronomy. Support for AAS meetings is also important for these efforts, since these meetings represent a crucial networking opportunity for astronomers at all levels.

As a Trustee, I would work to implement policies that would help the AAS serve and support its members at all levels, from undergraduate to the most senior levels. I look forward to the chance to do this.

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Nominating Committee

Description: The Nominating Committee prepares slates of candidates for Officers and Trustees as specified in the Bylaws.
Term Elected For: 3 years
Currently Serving:
  • Christine Jones, Chair (Jun 2018 - Jun 2020)
  • Doris Daou (Feb 2017 - Feb 2020)
  • Jeremy J. Drake (Feb 2018 - Feb 2021)
  • Ryan C. Hickox (Feb 2017 - Feb 2020)
  • Stella Kafka (Feb 2016 - Feb 2019)
  • Patricia Knezek (Feb 2016 - Feb 2019)

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Travis Rector


Biography

Professional Title/Position

PhD

Degrees and Education

University of Colorado, PhD (1998)

Affiliations

University of Alaska Anchorage

Research Areas, Topics, and Interests

  • Astronomy education research
  • Blazars
  • Cataclysmic variables
  • Star formation
  • Imagery and data visualization
  • Public outreach

Services, Roles, and Activities

  • Astronomy Education Board (2002 – 2004 and 2015 – present)
  • Education Task force (present)
  • Annie Jump Cannon Prize (2015 – present)

Professional Experience and Positions

  • LSST Education and Public Outreach group
  • LSST Community Science Center Working Group
  • Service on numerous TACs and proposal review committees for NSF and NASA

Candidate Statement

The AAS's mission is to enhance and share humanity’s scientific understanding of the universe. Our society's current vision statement and strategic plan outline numerous goals related to this mission statement. Of these goals, these are what I consider to be the three highest priorities that the AAS should focus on improving:

1) Diversity and inclusivity. Our field will advance by ensuring that everyone has an equal chance to participate in astronomy. Like the rest of society, the AAS has considerable work to do to address inequalities in our field, from educational practices to the hiring pipeline.

2) Education and Public Outreach. Our work is for the betterment of society. And in most cases, our funding depends on the public's support. We need to improve the public's understanding of, and attitudes towards, astronomical research.

3) The advancement of science in general, and in particular the science of climate change. With its impacts being felt worldwide, climate change is the most important scientific topic of this century. It is incumbent upon all scientists to raise awareness of it, enhance understanding, and to address misconceptions and misinformation about it. Because of our work in related fields, astronomers are in a particularly good position to do so.

While all of the society's goals are important, I see these three as being the most urgent. If elected to the nominating committee I will focus on finding candidates who see these as priorities as well.

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Emily Rice


Biography

Professional Title/Position

Associate Professor

Degrees and Education

UCLA, PhD (2009)

Affiliations

CUNY College of Staten Island & American Museum of Natural History

Research Areas, Topics, and Interests

  • Low mass stars, brown dwarfs, and exoplanets; specifically infrared spectroscopy, high-contrast imaging, and model atmospheres
  • Mentoring students, especially those from groups & backgrounds underrepresented in science careers
  • Creative science outreach & communicating with the public; specific projects include Astronomy on Tap events and the STARtorialist science-fashion blog

Services, Roles, and Activities

  • AAS Presidential Early Career Advisory Board (2016)

Professional Experience and Positions

  • Member/chair of the Research Committee of the Faculty Senate, CUNY College of Staten Island (2012 – 2018)
  • Reviewer for NSF, NASA, Sloan Foundation, SACNAS, AAS journals & small research grants, CAPJournal (2010 – present)
  • Women's Center Advisory Board, CUNY College of Staten Island (2017 – present)

Candidate Statement

As a member of the AAS Nominating Committee I will work to ensure that the Officers and Trustees of the AAS reflect as completely as possible both the current and optimal future membership of the AAS. Now that I am tenured faculty with an established and productive research group (see http://www.bdnyc.org/ for more details), I am eager to increase my involvement in the AAS. I believe that our professional organization has a tremendous amount of potential to transform our scientific community to be accessible, inclusive, equitable, and even to set an example for other scientific disciplines. This impetus for change, though it may begin among the members, needs to be enthusiastically supported by the Officers and Trustees of the AAS in order for it to be effective and long-lasting. My initial focus on the Nominating Committee is to ensure that our Officers and Trustees prioritize our members who stand to benefit the most from these changes, including students, people from groups and/or backgrounds underrepresented in science careers, academic astronomers who are isolated in their departments and/or institutions, and astronomers who have pursued careers outside of astronomical research. Recognizing that service work can place disproportionate burden on people who are part of marginalized groups, I will ensure that the Officers and Trustees also include people in privileged positions who are informed and effective advocates. I firmly believe that the inclusion and support of astronomers in the broadest definition possible will improve the professional experience for everyone involved.

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Nicole Cabrera Salazar


Biography

Professional Title/Position

CEO

Degrees and Education

Georgia State University, PhD (2017)

Affiliations

Movement Consulting

Research Areas, Topics, and Interests

  • Physics Education Research
  • Equity and Inclusion Research

Services, Roles, and Activities

  • Co-Chair, Committee on the Status of Minorities in Astronomy (2018 – Present)
  • Co-Chair, Site Visit Oversight Committee (2017 – Present)
  • Member, Committee on the Status of Minorities in Astronomy (2016 – Present)

Professional Experience and Positions

  • Founder and CEO, Movement Consulting (2017 – Present)

    Founded a company to help science institutions make their cultures more inclusive. Services consist of faculty training, student workshops, tailored programming, and STEM inclusion consulting. Clients include Harvard University, Stanford University, University of Arizona, University of Colorado Boulder, Haverford College, and University of California, Santa Cruz.

  • Social Impact Team Lead + Research Scientist, Future Laboratories, 2017

    Conducted research on the viability of a US universal basic income (UBI) for a social innovation company. Designed, facilitated, and coordinated logistics for team on-boarding. Studied the historical context, status quo, and potential impact of UBI on marginalized Americans. Collaborated with team members to design a simple, plausible, and affordable American UBI program. Co-authored a rigorous Pew-style report on research findings with recommendations for implementing UBI in the US.

  • Properties, Activity, + Planet-Hosting Potential of Young Suns Near Earth

    Doctoral Thesis, Georgia State University + Université Joseph Fourier, 2010 – 2017 Obtained simultaneous NIR and optical spectra of young stars in the nearby moving groups AB Doradus, Beta Pictoris, and Tucana Horologium to search for young planets. We used CSHELL at the NASA IRTF (Hawaii) and SOPHIE at the Observatoire de Haute Provence (France) to obtain our data. Our goal is to characterize the stellar activity of our stars and compare the NIR and optical spectra to distinguish planets from stellar spots and to assess the feasibility of multi-wavelength spectroscopic planet search surveys.

Candidate Statement

My lived experience as a first-generation, immigrant Latina astronomer has taught me what the field is doing well and what remains lacking. As a recent PhD graduate and entrepreneur who serves the community outside an academic context, I am keenly aware of the need to expand Society membership to astronomers in the industry. With fewer than 1 in 5 astronomy PhDs securing a tenure-track faculty position, the Board of Trustees must include members in alternate careers. Through my work as an inclusion consultant, I mentor many marginalized students who are passionate about improving our community and are poised to be future leaders of the Society. However, improvements to representation in leadership must come first.

The AAS Nominating Committee is responsible for submitting Board nominations for vote by AAS members. As the governing body of the society, it is critical that the Board of Trustees represent all members of the astronomy community. My goals to serve on the Nominating Committee are aligned with the AAS mission of supporting and promoting increased participation of historically underrepresented groups. As such, my focus will be to increase the diversity of candidate pools for elected positions.

Securing the Society’s position as leader of scholarly discourse, advocacy, meetings, and publications within astronomy (Goal 1 of the AAS Strategic Plan) depends on its continued relevance to *all* members (Goal 2 of the AAS Strategic Plan). As the field grows increasingly diverse, a board that can support broad participation in AAS programs and initiatives becomes more imperative. If elected to this committee, I will nominate candidates that increase the Society’s understanding of and ability to meet the needs of underrepresented groups.

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Dana Longcope


Biography

Professional Title/Position

Professor

Degrees and Education

Cornell University, PhD (1993)

Affiliations

Montana State University

Research Areas, Topics, and Interests

  • Solar Flares
  • Magnetic Reconnection
  • Singular Magnetostatic Equilibria
  • Active Region Formation and Magnetic Flux Emergence

Services, Roles, and Activities

  • Chair/vice-Chair, AAS/SPD (2014 – 2018)
  • Member, SPD award committee (2012 – 2014)
  • Member, SPD committee (2001 – 2004, 201 – 2020)

Professional Experience and Positions

  • AURA member representative (2008 – present)
  • Member, AURA Board of Directors (2016 – 2019)
  • Member, AURA Nominating Committee (2014 – 2015)
  • Member, AURA Solar Observatory Council (2008 – 2014)
  • Member, NRC Committee on Solar and Space Physics (CSSP), (2005 – 2010)
  • Member, Panel on Solar Astronomy, NRC Survey of Astronomy and Astrophysics (Decadal Survey), (1999)

Candidate Statement

I have been active in the AAS for over fifteen years. Most of my service has been to the Solar Physics Division (SPD) where I have just finished a 4-year term as Chair and Vice-chair. In this capacity I attended the annual leadership meetings in which leaders from all the AAS divisions meet in DC. I was chairing the SPD as the AAS adopted its revised governance structure. I also worked co-organizing three of the SPD's national meetings in coordination with the AAS conference planners. I have also served AURA's governing structure in several capacities including two years on its nominating committee. All of these roles have provided me with some understanding of AAS governance and its operations. I have also developed, over the years, some familiarity with the AAS community, especially its solar and stellar components.

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USNC-IAU

Description: The US National Committee for the International Astronomical Union (USNC-IAU) represents the interests of the US astronomical community and safeguards the intellectual vigor of the Union.
Term Elected For: 3 years
Currently Serving:

Please select up to 1 option(s).

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Duilia de Mello


Biography

Professional Title/Position

Vice Provost/Professor of Physics

Degrees and Education

University of Sao Paulo, PhD (1995)

Affiliations

The Catholic University of America

Research Areas, Topics, and Interests

  • Interacting Galaxies
  • Galaxy Evolution
  • Starburst Galaxies
  • Massive Stars

Services, Roles, and Activities

n/a

Professional Experience and Positions

  • Keynote speaker of the IAU Women in Astronomy Lunch in the 2009 General Assembly
  • Member of numerous scientific organizing committees
  • Member of time allocation committees for Hubble, GALEX, Swift, Kepler and NOAO
  • Chaired numerous committees including Assessment Council and University Research Operation Committee

Candidate Statement

I have been a member of the AAS and the IAU since I was a graduate student. I know really well both organizations and have been involved in promoting women and mentoring students in both organizations. I am also an active member of the Latin American Regional IAU and have attended several regional meetings. I was actively involved in the organization of the General Assembly in Brazil in 2009 and understand the impact the IAU has in the local community. In order to better represent the interests of the US astronomical community I will connect with the AAS members as much as possible and bring their voices to the IAU. As the USNC-IAU I will motivate the AAS members to be an active member of the IAU by leading proposals to host scientific meetings and volunteering to participate in the IAU Divisions, Commissions, Working and Program Groups. I will advertise opportunities to the AAS members and make sure they apply for IAU funding and nominate their pe ers for awards and prizes. I will connect the AAS members with opportunities related to Office for Astronomy Outreach, the Women in Astronomy Working Group and initiatives related to diversity and inclusion. During my three-year term I will engage the AAS members to attend the next General Assembly to be hosted in Busan, South Korea, in 16-21 August 2021.

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Enrico Ramirez-Ruiz


Biography

Professional Title/Position

Professor and Chair

Degrees and Education

University of Cambridge, PhD (2003)

Affiliations

University of California, Santa Cruz

Research Areas, Topics, and Interests

  • high energy astrophysics - especially ultra compact binaries, galactic nuclei, black hole formation and radiative processes (including gravitational waves)

Professional Experience and Positions

  • Member, UC MEXUS Advisory Committee
  • Member, Scientific Advisory Board, Carlsberg Foundation, Denmark
  • General Member, Aspen Center for Physics
  • Elected Member, Division of Astrophysics, American Physical Society
  • Neils Bohr Professor, Denmark
  • Elected Member, Mexican Academy of Sciences

Candidate Statement

Our opportunity and responsibility is to productively engage the broader astronomical communities, and coherently advocate for science with funding agencies and planning committees here and abroad. These goals depend on an active and informed constituency and stronger connections with other societies around the world. We should also do our part in ensuring a more diverse group will lead the future of the field by recognizing the work of underrepresented scientists and by originating and participating in initiatives that broaden our reach among the public. The enthusiasm that our science provokes should be well cultivated to help the AAS promote the values of science in general and astronomy in particular.

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