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The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine
Board on Physics and Astronomy
Division on Engineering and Physical Sciences

CAA Member Bios


MARCIA J. RIEKE (NAS) is a Regents’ Professor of Astronomy and an astronomer in the Department of Astronomy at the University of Arizona. Her research interests include infrared observations of galactic nuclei and high-redshift galaxies. She has served as the deputy principle investigator (PI) on the near-infrared camera and multi-object spectrometer for Hubble Space Telescope (NICMOS), and she is currently the PI for the near-infrared camera (NIRCam) for the James Webb Space Telescope. Dr. Rieke has worked on the Spitzer Space Telescope as a co-investigator for the multiband imaging photometer and as an outreach coordinator and as a member of the Science Working Group. She was also involved with several infrared ground observatories, including the Multiple Mirror Telescope in Arizona. Dr. Rieke is a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. She received her Ph.D. in physics from Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Dr. Rieke currently serves on the NRC’s Space Studies Board. Her previous NRC service includes as co-vice chair of the Astro2010 Decadal Survey Committee, as a member on the 2000 astronomy and astrophysics decadal survey steering committee, as a vice chair on the Panel on Ultraviolet, Optical, and Infrared Astronomy from Space for the 2000 survey, and as a member on the Steering Committee for the Task Group on Space Astronomy and Astrophysics, and the U.S. National Committee for the International Astronomical Union.



STEVEN M. RITZ is a professor of physics and the director of the Santa Cruz Institute for Particle Physics at the University of California (UCSC), Santa Cruz. He is a fellow of the American Physical Society and a recipient of the NASA Outstanding Leadership Medal, and he was a Sloan Foundation Fellow in Physics. Prior to joining the faculty at UCSC he was an astrophysicist at NASA’s Goddard Spaceflight Center, where he served as the Fermi (nee GLAST) project scientist, and an adjunct professor at the University of Maryland. Before moving to NASA he was an associate professor of physics at Columbia. He chaired the Particle Physics Project Prioritization Panel (P5) for National Science Foundation and Department of Energy, and he is currently the LSST Camera Project Scientist. He received his B.A. in physics and music from Wesleyan University, his M.S. in physics from the University of Wisconsin, Madison, and his Ph.D. in physics from the University of Wisconsin, Madison. His prior Academies’ membership includes the Panel on Implementing Recommendations from New Worlds New Horizons Decadal Survey the Decadal Survey of Astronomy and Astrophysics 2010 (NWNH) Committee. He is currently on the committee to Review Progress Toward the Decadal Survey Vision in New Worlds, New Horizons in Astronomy and Astrophysics.


JEREMIAH K. DARLING is an assistant professor of astrophysics at the Center for Astrophysics and Space Astronomy at the University of Colorado, Boulder. His research focuses on galaxy evolution and cosmology, including hydroxyl megamasers, galaxy-black hole co-evolution, formaldehyde and water in star-forming galaxies, molecular and atomic gas in gravitation lenses, high-redshift quasars, hydrogen absorption, and the evolution of the fine structure constant. Dr. Darling is currently working on molecular methods to identify and study star-forming and merging galaxies and to use those galaxies as cosmological programs. He has observed with the Magellan telescopes, the Spitzer Space Telescope, Arecibo, the Very Large Array, the Very Long Baseline Array, the Green Bank Telescope, Palomar, Keck, Westerbork, the Giant Metrewave Radio Telescope, and Kitt Peak. In addition, Dr. Darling is involved with preparations for upcoming telescopes, including the Expanded Very Large Array, the Atacama Large Millimeter/Submillimeter Array, the Cerro Chajnantor Atacama Telescope, the Australian Square Kilometre Array Pathfinder, and the Square Kilometre Array. He received his B.S. in physics from the California Institute of Technology and his Ph.D. in astrophysics from Cornell University. Dr. Darling is a member of the Committee on Astronomy and Astrophysics.


MEGAN DONAHUE is a professor in the Department of Physics and Astronomy at Michigan State University. Dr. Donahue’s research interests include the thermodynamic state and behavior of baryons in and around galaxies, intergalactic gas, star formation in bright cluster galaxies, and dark matter in distant galactic clusters, for which she uses data from NASA’s Chandra X-ray Observatory and Hubble Space Telescope and the European Space Agency's X-ray Multi-Mirror Newton X-ray Observatory. She also uses the Spitzer and SOAR (the MSU Chilean telescope) programs to study brightest cluster galaxies and clusters. Dr. Donahue earned her B.S. in physics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and her Ph.D. in astrophysics from the University of Colorado. Dr. Donahue previously served on the Academies’ Astro2010 Decadal Survey Panel on Electromagnetic Observations from Space, the U.S. National Committee for the International Astronomical Union, and the NASA Astrophysics Performance Assessment Committee.


TOM GREENE is an astrophysicist for the Space Science and Astrobiology Division at NASA’s Ames Center for Exoplanet Studies. While at NASA he was the branch chief, a staff member and director of the NASA Infrared Telescope (IRTF), and more recently the SOFIA project scientist. Prior to NASA he was the capture lead for a James Webb Space Telescope instrument study, an Explorer mission (FAME) while working at the Lockheed Martin Advanced Technology Center. Dr. Greene received his B.A. in physics from the University of California, Santa Cruz, and his Ph.D. in astronomy from the University of Arizona. His served as a member on the NRC Astro2010 Panel on Electromagnetic Observations from Space.


LEE HARTMANN is the Leo Goldberg Collegiate Professor of Astronomy at the University of Michigan. He has worked as an astrophysicist at the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory and was a vice president of the American Astronomical Society. Dr. Hartmann’s research interests include formation of stars and star clusters, molecular cloud structure and dynamics, protostellar accretion, evolution of protoplanetary disks and planet formation, and mass function of stars. Dr. Hartmann is a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. He received his Ph.D. in astronomy from the University of Wisconsin System in 1976 and his B.S. in Astronomy from Case Western Reserve University. Dr. Hartmann has served on two Academies’ committees, as chair of the Astro2010 Panel on Planetary Systems and Star Formation, and as a member of the U.S. National Committee for the International Astronomical Union.


VASSILIKI KALOGERA is the E.O. Haven Professor of physics and astronomy and the director of the Center for Interdisciplinary Exploration and Research in Astrophysics at Northwestern University. Dr. Kalogera previously served as a Postdoctoral Fellow at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics before becoming an assistant professor at Northwestern in 2001, an Associate Professor in 2006, and full professor in 2009. Dr. Kalogera has earned a David and Lucile Packard Foundation Fellowship in Science and Engineering, the Maria Goeppert-Mayer Award by the American Physical Society (APS), the Cottrell Scholar Award by the Research Corporation, the NSF CAREER Award in astronomy, the A.J. Cannon Award by the American Astronomical Society (AAS), and a Fellowship in Theoretical Physics from the Simons Foundation. She served as the chair of the APS Division of Computational Physics, and has served on the Astrophysics Subcommittee of the NASA Advisory Council Science Committee, the NASA Chandra Users Committee, as well as having been elected to the Executive Committees of the APS Division of Astrophysics, the APS Topical Group on Gravity, and the AAS High Energy Astrophysics Division. Dr. Kalogera earned a B.S. in physics from the University of Thessaloniki in 1992, and her Ph.D. in Astronomy from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 1997. She has no previous Academies committee experience.


BRUCE MACINTOSH is a professor of physics at Stanford University. His research focuses on the detection of extrasolar planets through direct imaging, and on using adaptive optics to shape the wavefronts of light for a variety of applications. He is a co-discoverer of four planets orbiting the star HR 8799 and is the Principal Investigator of the Gemini Planet Imager, an advance adaptive optics planet-finder for the Gemini South Telescope. He received his Ph.D. in astronomy at University of California, Los Angles. Dr. Macintosh served as a member on the Astronomy and Astrophysics 2010 Decadal Survey Panel on Optical and Infrared Astronomy from the Ground.

CHRISTOPHER F. McKEE (NAS) is a professor of physics and of astronomy at the University of California, Berkeley, where he earned his Ph.D. in physics. His research focuses on the theory of the interstellar medium and of star formation. He helped develop the three-phase model of the interstellar medium, which has been widely used to organize and interpret observational data. He is currently carrying out numerical simulations of star formation. Dr. McKee is a member of the American Physical Society, the American Astronomical Society, and the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). Dr. McKee led the establishment of the Theoretical Astrophysics Center at Berkeley and served as its first director. He subsequently directed the Space Sciences Laboratory and served as the chair for the Department of Physics as well as the Interim Dean of Mathematical and Physical Sciences. He is currently serving as interim vice chancellor for Research. He is a member of the National Academy of Sciences and serves as the NAS Section 12 liaison. He previously served on the Academies’ Board on Physics and Astronomy, the Committee on Review of Progress in Astronomy and Astrophysics toward the Decadal Vision, and co-chaired the 2000 astronomy and astrophysics decadal survey. 


MARK M. PHILLIPS is the Director of Las Campanas Observatory (LCO) of the Carnegie Institution for Science. Phillips completed his post-doctorate at Cerro Tololo Inter-American Observatory (CTIO) of the National Optical Astronomy Observatory and the Anglo-Australian Observatory; he later returned as a staff scientist at CTIO and eventually served as the assistant director. Since 1998, he has been a staff member of the Carnegie Observatories. Dr. Phillips specializes in supernovae as an instrument to understand the evolution of the universe as well as standard candles to measure distances using the Phillips relationship, and his current projects aim to gain further clues about the nature of dark energy. Dr. Phillips received the AURA Science Achievement Award (1994), the Gruber Prize in cosmology (2007), the SOCHIAS Prize for Outstanding Contribution to Chilean Astronomy (2010), the Nobel Prize in Physics (2011) as part of the High-z Supernova Search Team, the Scopus Physics and Astronomy Award in Chile (2013), and the Breakthrough Prize in Fundamental Physics (2014), and he is a member of the International Astronomical Union (IAU). He completed his Ph.D. in astronomy and astrophysics at the University of California, Santa Cruz, conducting his research at Lick Observatory. He has no previous Academies’ experience.


JAMES M. STONE is professor of astrophysical sciences and applied and computational mathematics at Princeton University. He is also the associate director of the Princeton Institute for Computational Science and Engineering. His research group studies gas dynamics in a wide variety of astrophysical systems, from protostars to clusters of galaxies. As part of this effort, the group develops, tests, and applies numerical algorithms for astrophysical gas dynamics on high-performance computers. He received his Ph.D. in astronomy from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Dr. Stone served as a member on the NRC committee on the Potential Impact of High-End Computing on Illustrative Fields of Science and Engineering and the Plasma Science Committee.


ALEXEY VIKHLININ is deputy associate director of the High Energy Astrophysics Division of the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics. He is also a senior researcher at the High Energy Astrophysics division of Moscow's Space Research Institute. His main research area is X-ray studies of galaxy clusters and their applications for cosmology and physics of the intergalactic medium. The main past projects in this area include: Development of the efficient detection pipeline for extended X-ray sources -- the backbone of the 160 and 400 square degrees surveys;Using Chandra to study cold fronts in merging clusters; Reconstruction of the mass distribution in low-redshift clusters from deep Chandra observations and study of cluster evolution at high redshifts; and Using X-ray observations to constrain Dark Energy parameters using evolution of the cluster mass function. His research also includes collaboration with the South Pole Telescope team on X-ray observations of clusters discovered by their Sunyaev-Zeldovich signal; improvements in the cluster mass calibration using weak lensing techniques; studies of interplay between stellar and gaseous baryonic components in clusters; helping theorists to improve the intracluster medium modeling in numerical simulations; also helping to make sure that a next-generation all-sky X-ray survey (e.g., SRG/eRosita or WFXT) becomes a reality. After receiving his Ph.D. in Moscow in 1995, Vikhlinin came to the United States where his main research is on X-ray studies of galaxy clusters and their application for cosmology and the physics of the intergalactic medium. He was recently co-awarded the 2008 Rossi Prize from the American Astronomical Society for his work on cluster cosmology and cold fronts. He has no prior NRC committee service.


ERIC M. WILCOTS is a professor of astronomy and associate dean for natural and mathematical sciences at the University of Wisconsin-Madison (UW). He is an observer with broad expertise in the gas content and evolution of galaxies and galaxy groups and the impact of massive stars on the evolution of galaxies. This work includes understanding the distribution and kinematics of neutral hydrogen in and around galaxies, the impact of massive stars on their environment, and the role of active galactic nuclei in the evolution of galaxy groups and structure. He brings knowledge about radio, optical, and infrared astronomy. Dr. Wilcots served as chair of the department of astronomy at UW-Madison before becoming an associate dean in the College of Letters & Science. Dr. Wilcots has served on the Users, Visitors, and Program Advisory Committees for the National Radio Astronomy Observatory. He was also a member of the Associated Universities, Inc. Committee on the Future of Radio Astronomy. He was a member of the Science Working Group for the International Square Kilometer Array project and is a member of the Board of the Southern African Large Telescope. He has also served on the board of the Wisconsin-Indiana-Yale-National (WIYN) Optical Astronomical Observatory consortium. Dr. Wilcots is also a trustee of the Associated Universities Inc. He received his Ph.D. in astronomy and astrophysics from University of Washington. He was a member of the Academies’ Astro2010 Panel on Galaxies Across Cosmic Time.


A. THOMAS YOUNG (NAE) is retired executive vice president of Lockheed Martin. He is former chair of the board of SAIC. Mr. Young previously was president and chief operating officer of Martin Marietta Corporation. Prior to joining industry, Mr. Young worked for 21 years at NASA. At NASA, he directed the Goddard Space Flight Center, was deputy director of the Ames Research Center, and directed the Planetary Program in the Office of Space Science at NASA Headquarters. Mr. Young received high acclaim for his technical leadership in organizing and directing national space and defense programs, especially the Viking program. He is currently a fellow of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA) and of the American Astronautical Society (AAS). Mr. Young previously served as the vice chair of the NRC’s Space Studies Board and has extensive NRC experience. Prior committee service includes membership on the Planetary Science Decadal Survey steering committee, the Astro2010 Decadal Survey Committee and subsequent Panel on Implementing Recommendations from New Worlds, New Horizons Decadal Survey, and the Committee on Assessment of Impediments to Interagency Cooperation on Space and Earth Science Missions.