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BISO Home > Board Membership and Staff > Biographical Sketches of BISO Board Members

Biographical Sketches of BISO Board Members

Tilahun D. Yilma (NAS) is Professor of Virology and Director, International Laboratory of Molecular Biology for Tropical Disease Agents, School of Veterinary Medicine, University of California, Davis. He is nominated to serve as chair for a three year term. Dr. Yilma is a current member of the Committee on Human Rights of the NAS, NAE and IOM; NAS International Temporary Nominating Group for Class VI: Applied Biological, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences. Dr. Yilma is an immunologist whose research has focused on the development of recombinant vaccines and rapid diagnostic kits for the viral diseases of animals and humans. This work has produced the knowledge and the biotechnology required for the global eradication of rinderpest, a virus infecting cattle that has threatened the economies of developing countries in Asia and Africa. He received his PhD from the University of California, Davis in 1977.

Robert S. Chen is the Director of CIESIN and a Senior Research Scientist. He is nominated to serve as a member for a three year term. Dr. Chen served as CIESIN’s deputy director from July 1998 to April 2006 and as CIESIN’s interim director from May 2006 to January 2007. He is also the manager and co-principal investigator of the Socioeconomic Data and Applications Center (SEDAC), a data center in the NASA Earth Observing System Data and Information System. He is currently secretary-general of the Committee on Data for Science and Technology (CODATA) of the International Council for Science (ICSU) and a member of the new ICSU ad hoc Strategic Coordinating Committee on Information and Data (SCCID). Dr. Chen has contributed to activities of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) for more than a decade and currently serves as an ex officio member of the IPCC Task Group on Data and Scenario Support for Impacts and Climate Analysis (TGICA) and co-manager of the IPCC Data Distribution Center (DDC). He was recently appointed to the Committee on Spatial Data Enabling USGS Strategic Science in the 21st Century of the U.S. National Research Council (NRC) Board on Earth Sciences and Resources (BESR) and also serves as an ex officio member of the NRC Board on Research Data and Information (BRDI). Dr. Chen received his PhD from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Daniel L. Goroff is currently a Program Director at Alfred Sloan Foundation in New York.  Prior to that, he served as vice president and Dean of the Faculty at Harvey Mudd College, CA.  Dr. Goroff is a past chair and member of the U.S. National Commission on Mathematics Instruction and has distinguished himself as a leader in mathematics and science education and in its advocacy.  In addition to his faculty roles, he served as associate director of the Derek Bok Center for Teaching and Learning and as a tutor at Harvard's Leverett House. His interests are in dynamical systems and Hamiltonian mechanics mathematical history, philosophy, and education.  Dr. Goroff received his Ph.D. from Princeton University in 1984.

Lisa Grant Ludwig is Associate Professor, Program in Public Health, College of Health Sciences, Social Ecology, at the University of California, Irvine. She is a former member of the U.S. National Committee for Geodesy and Geophysics, and she has been a member of two NAS-appointed delegations to international General Assemblies. She was independently recommended by the USNC/IUGG and by the Office of International Science and Engineering (OISE) at the National Science Foundation because of her knowledge of public health, natural disasters, and the geological sciences. She is nominated to serve as a member for a three year term. Dr. Ludwig is interested in potential distruption of water systems due to seismic of quaternary aquifers in the Los Angeles and Orange County region. Her research group addresses natural hazards an disasters from a geologic perspective with emphasis on earthquakes. She served as Vice Chair, Board of Directors, Southern California Earthquake Center 2007-2011 and Member, Board of Directors, Seismological Society of America, 2010- 2013. Dr. Ludwig received her Ph.D. in Geology with Geophysics from the California Institute of Technology in 1993.

William H. Hooke is a Senior Policy Fellow at the American Meteorological Society since June 2000, and Director of the Policy Program since July 2001. He is nominated to serve as a member for a three year term. His current policy research interests includes natural disaster reduction; historical precedents as they illuminate present-day policy; and the nature and implications of changing national requirements for weather and climate science and services. He also directs AMS policy education programs, including the AMS Summer Policy Colloquium, and the AMS-UCAR Congressional Science Fellowship Program. Dr. Hooke received his PhD from the University of Chicago in 1967.

C. Bradley Moore is Professor of Chemistry Emeritus in the Department of Chemistry at the University of California, Berkeley. When originally approached by Welford Castleman, the NAS-14 (Chemistry) Section liaison, to serve on the U.S. National Committee for the International Union for Pure and Applied Chemistry (IUPAC), Dr. Moore also expressed interest in working with BISO on issues related to ICSU. He is nominated to serve as a member for a term of three years. Dr. Moore's research focuses on molecular energy transfer, chemical reaction dynamics, photochemistry, and spectroscopy. Applications of his work are found in combustion and atmospheric chemistry, chemical and molecular lasers, and isotope separation. He is a member of the National Academy of Sciences and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. He has served as Chair and Dean at University of California, Berkeley and as Vice President for Research at the Ohio State University and Northwestern University. He has been particularly interested in building and obtaining support for multidisciplinary research and programs that have the potential to improve human life on our planet. He received his Ph.D. in Chemistry from the University of California, Berkeley, 1963.

Lueny Morell is Director of University Relations for Latin America for Hewlett Packard (HP) Company. She is nominated to serve as a member for a three year term. She is responsible for developing and strengthening HP's ties to a select number of institutions in Latin America. Her job entails working with the higher education community and leading academic institutions on everything from research and student recruitment to customer and government relations and policy advocacy. She is also involved in curriculum development, advising industry, facilitating accreditation initiatives, supporting student and faculty research, and philanthropic projects. Before joining HP in 2002, Professor Morell had a 24-year career at the University of Puerto Rico, where she held various positions, both at the Mayaguez Campus (UPRM) and the system level. A full professor of chemical engineering, she was director of the UPRM Research and Development Center, a member to the Academic Senate and Administrative Board, and special assistant to the chancellor and dean of engineering in charge of strategic alliances, new educational initiatives, and outcome assessment. Professor Lueny also coordinated the ABET 2000 accreditation for UPRM. A licensed professional engineer and certified ABET evaluator, she has done professional consulting work and is a member of many professional and honorary societies, including Tau Beta Pi, Phi Kappa Phi, Sigma Xi, Alpha Delta Kappa, American Society of Electrical Engineers, and American Institute of Chemical Engineers. Professor Morell has more than 40 scientific and educational papers to her credit and has received the NAE Bernard M. Gordon Prize along with many honors during her academic career. Dr. Morell received her MSChe from Stanford University.

J. Bruce Overmier is Professor, Department of Psychology, University of Minnesota. He is nominated to serve as a member for a term of three years. He is a former president of the International Union of Psychological Sciences (IUPsyS), and is currently an ex officio member of the U.S. National Committee for IUPsyS. From 2008-2011, Dr. Overmeir was a member of the Executive Board of the International Council for Science where he represented the social sciences unions. Dr. Overmier has served as executive officer (1973-1978; 1981-1983) and director (1983-1989) of the Center for Research in Learning, Perception & Cognition (now the Center for Cognitive Science). He is also Professor in biological and medical psychology at the University of Bergen (Norway) since 1992. As a scholar, Dr. Overmier has received numerous postdoctoral awards (e.g., from the National Institutes of Health, Fulbright-Hayes, James McKeen Cattell Foundation, etc.), including the Minnesota Psychological Association's Outstanding Psychologist Award (2004). His research spans specialties of learning, memory, stress, psychosomatic disorders and their biological substrates. This research is carried out with a variety of species of laboratory animals as well as with human client volunteers (suffering Down syndrome, Korsakoff syndrome or Alzheimer's disease), yielding some 200 research articles, chapters and books. Numerous grants to Dr. Overmier include ones from NIMH, NICHD and NSF for research and for training of students, including a multiyear training program for fostering minority and women scholars in psychology. He received his PhD in Psychology: Learning from the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia in 1965.

Jay S. Pearlman recently retired as Chief Engineer of NCOC&EM from the Boeing Phantom Works. He is nominated to serve as a member for a three year term. Dr. Pearlman would bring an industry perspective and a familiarity with the GOOS ocean observing satellites, co-managed by ICSU, WMO, UNEP, and the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission. In December 2012, he will rotate off both the Ocean Studies Board and the U.S. National Committee for the Scientific Committee for Ocean Research (SCOR). The latter is one of the ICSU-related activities not housed within BISO. In both of those capacities, Dr. Pearlman has worked closely with staff of both Boards and has promoted the flow of information between the Boards. Dr. Pearlman's background includes basic research; program management; and program development in sensors, remote sensing, and information systems. Over the last few years, Dr. Pearlman was the focal point for the IGIS Demo on Coastal Impacts and the Boeing Global Radiosonde Program for improved weather data, the Chief Architect for the NOAA GOES-R Study Contract, and the Chief Scientist for the Landsat Data Continuity Contract. He was also Deputy PM and PI for the NASA Hyperion Program. Dr. Pearlman led the NCO research and technology coordination and a Boeing Technical Fellow. He is Co-Chair of the GEO Architecture and Data Committee, a member of the GOOS Science and Technology Steering Committee, a member of IOC JCOMM, on the Board of the Northwest Regional Ocean Observing System (NANOOS), and Chair of the NANOOS data management committee. He is active in promoting systems of systems architecture and information system development for large-scale national and global applications, including advancing ocean and coastal information systems. Dr. Pearlman has more than 70 publications and 25 U.S. and international patents. He has a Ph.D. from the University of Washington.

Karen B. Strier is a Hilldale Professor of Anthropology in the Department of Anthropology, University of Wisconsin.  Dr. Strier is a member of the National Academy of Sciences and a past member of the USNC/International Union of Biological Sciences. An authority on the behavioral ecology of the endangered northern muriqui monkeys of Brazil, her research efforts have been critical to conservation efforts on behalf of this species, and she has been influential in broadening comparative perspectives of primate behavioral and ecological diversity, as well as the evolution of variation in behavior.  She received her Ph.D. from Harvard in 1986.  

Ex-officio members 

Christopher Field (NAS) is Director, Department of Global Ecology, Carnegie Institution for Science. He has been selected as a member of ICSU's important Committee on Scientific Planning and Review (CSPR). He is a former member of the BISO Board (2006-2009), and a former member and chair of the currently unfunded, largely defunct U.S. National Committee for the Scientific Committee on Problems of the Environment (handled through DELS). 

Dov Jaron is Calhoun Distinguished Professor of Engineering in Medicine, School of Biomedical Engineering, Science and Health Systems and Professor of Electrical Engineering, Drexel University. Dr. Jaron received his Ph.D. degree in Biomedical Engineering from the University of Pennsylvania in 1967. From 1971 to 1973 he was Director of the Surgical Research Laboratory at Sinai Hospital of Detroit. Prior to joining Sinai Hospital he was Senior Research Associate and later Director of the Surgical Research Laboratory at Maimonides Medical Center in New York. From 1973 to 1979 Dr. Jaron was on the faculty of the Electrical Engineering department and functioned as Coordinator of the Biomedical Engineering program at the University of Rhode Island. He served as Director of the Biomedical Engineering and Science Institute at Drexel University from 1980 to 1996. From 1991 to 1993 he was on a two-year assignment to the National Science Foundation, where he was Director of the Division of Biological and Critical Systems in the Engineering Directorate. From 1996 to 1998 he was Associate Director for the National Center for Research Resources and Director of its Biomedical Technology program at the National Institutes of Health. 

Kennedy Reed is a Theoretical Physicist at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory where his research focuses primarily on atomic collisions in high temperature plasmas. He is a member of the U.S. Liaison Committee for the International Union of Pure and Applied Physics (IUPAP), and is also Chair of the IUPAP Commission on Physics for Development. Dr. Reed has served as Vice-Chair of the American Physical Society (APS) Committee on International Scientific Affairs, and has been awarded the APS John Wheatley Award for his contributions to Physics Research and Education in Africa. The California Section of the American Physical Society annually presents a student award that is named in honor of Dr. Reed. He is also a recipient of the 2009 Presidential Award for Excellence in Science, Mathematics and Engineering Mentoring. Dr. Reed is a Fellow of the American Physical Society; Charter Fellow, National Society of Black Physicists; member, Optical Society of America; and member, American Association for the Advancement of Science. He received his Ph.D. in Physics at the University of Nebraska in 1978. 


This material is based upon work supported by the National Science Foundation under Grant Number IIA-1332689. Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation.
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