CESAS Member Bios
MARK R. ABBOTT is dean of the College of Oceanic and Atmospheric Sciences at Oregon State University (OSU). He received his B.S. in conservation of natural resources from the University of California, Berkeley, in 1974 and his Ph.D. in ecology from the University of California, Davis, in 1978. Dr. Abbott has been at OSU since 1988 and has been dean of the college since 2001. Prior to his appointments at OSU, he served as a member of the technical staff at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) and as a research oceanographer at Scripps Institution of Oceanography. Dr. Abbott’s research focuses on the interaction of biological and physical processes in the upper ocean and relies on both remote sensing and field observations. He is a pioneer in the use of satellite ocean color data to study coupled physical/biological processes. As part of a NASA Earth Observing System interdisciplinary science team, Dr. Abbott led an effort to link remotely sensed data of the Southern Ocean with coupled ocean circulation/ecosystem models. His field research included the first deployment of an array of bio-optical moorings in the Southern Ocean as part of the U.S. Joint Global Ocean Flux Study (JGOFS).Dr. Abbott has been a member of the National Science Board since 2006. He also currently chairs the U.S. JGOFS Science Steering Committee and is the vice chair of the Oregon Global Warming Commission. He is currently a member of the board of trustees for the Consortium for Ocean Leadership and the board of trustees for the University Corporation for Atmospheric Research. His past advisory posts include chairing the Coastal Ocean Applications and Science Team for NOAA and chairing the U.S. Joint Global Flux Study Science Steering Committee. He has also been a member of the Director’s Advisory Council for the JPL and NASA’s MODIS and SeaWiFS science teams and the Earth Observing System Investigators
JOYCE E. PENNER is the Ralph J. Cicerone Distinguished University Professor of Atmospheric Science and associate chair of the Department of Atmospheric, Oceanic and Space Sciences at the University of Michigan. Dr. Penner’s research focuses on improving climate models through the addition of interactive chemistry and the description of aerosols and their direct and indirect effects on the radiation balance in climate models. She is also interested in urban, regional, and global tropospheric chemistry and budgets, cloud and aerosol interactions and cloud microphysics, climate and climate change, and model development and interpretation. Dr. Penner has been a member of numerous advisory committees related to atmospheric chemistry, global change, and Earth science, including the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and, consequently, a co-winner of the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize. She was the coordinating lead author for IPCC (2001) Chapter 5 on aerosols. Dr. Penner received a B.A. in applied mathematics from the University of California, Santa Barbara, and her M.S. and Ph.D. in applied mathematics from Harvard University. She is currently a member of the NRC Committee on Assessment of NASA’s Earth Science Program and the U.S. National Committee for the International Union of Geodesy and Geophysics. Her prior NRC service includes being a member of the Space Studies Board, the planning committee for the Workshop on Uncertainty Management in Remote Sensing of Climate Data, and Panel on Climate Variability and Change for the 2007 decadal survey on Earth science and applications from space.
STEVEN A. ACKERMAN is a professor of atmospheric and ocean sciences and director of the Cooperative Institute for Meteorological Satellite Studies at the University of Wisconsin, Madison. Dr. Ackerman’s research focuses on satellite remote sensing and has produced several new methodologies for interpreting satellite observations, which has led to improved understanding of the radiative properties of clouds, a critical factor in weather and climate. Dr. Ackerman is principal investigator for the following NASA projects: Refinement and Maintenance of the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) Cloud Mask Algorithm on Terra and Aqua; Comparison of A-Train Cloud Retrievals and Multi-Instrument Algorithm Studies; and Algorithm Maintenance and Validation of MODIS Cloud Mask, Cloud Top-Pressure, Cloud Phase and Atmospheric Sounding Algorithms. He is co-principal investigator for NASA’s Global Analysis of MODIS Level-3 Cloud Properties and Their Sensitivity to Aggregation Strategies and Land Surface Characterization Using High Spectral Resolution AIRS and Moderate Spatial Resolution MODIS Observations from the EOS Aqua Platform. He was recently elected a fellow of the Wisconsin Academy of Science, Arts and Letters and is the recipient of numerous awards, including the NASA Exceptional Public Service Medal and the American Meteorological Society’s (AMS’s) Teaching Excellence Award. He received his M.S. in atmospheric science from Colorado State University and his Ph.D. in atmospheric science from Colorado State University. Dr. Ackerman has no prior NRC experience.
MICHAEL D. KING (NAE) is senior research associate in the Laboratory for Atmospheric and Space Physics at the University of Colorado, Boulder. Dr. King is also the science team leader for the MODIS instrument that flies on the Aqua and Terra satellites currently in orbit. He served as senior project scientist of NASA's Earth Observing System (EOS). He joined Goddard Space Flight Center as a physical scientist and previously served as project scientist of the Earth Radiation Budget Experiment (ERBE). His research experience includes conceiving, developing, and operating multispectral scanning radiometers from a number of aircraft platforms in field experiments ranging from arctic stratus clouds to smoke from the Kuwait oil fires and biomass burning in Brazil and southern Africa. Dr. King is also interested in surface reflectance properties of natural surfaces as well as aerosol optical and microphysical properties. Earlier, he developed the Cloud Absorption Radiometer for studying the absorption properties of optically thick clouds as well as the bidirectional reflectance properties of many natural surfaces. He is principal investigator of the MODIS Airborne Simulator, an imaging spectrometer that flies onboard the NASA ER-2 aircraft—an instrument that has aided in the development of atmospheric and land remote sensing algorithms for MODIS, which is used for studies of the Earth’s environment from space. Dr. King is a fellow of the American Geophysical Union (AGU) and the AMS, a recipient of the Verner E. Suomi Award of the AMS for fundamental contributions to remote sensing and radiative transfer, and a recipient of the Space Systems Award of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA) for NASA’s Earth Observing System. He received his M.S. and Ph.D. in atmospheric sciences from the University of Arizona. Dr. King is currently a member of the NRC’s Board on Atmospheric Sciences and Climate and the Climate Research Committee.
ANTONIO J. BUSALACCHI, JR., is professor in the Department of Atmospheric and Oceanic Science and director of the Earth System Science Interdisciplinary Center at the University of Maryland. His research interests include tropical ocean circulation and its role in the coupled climate system and climate variability and predictability. Dr. Busalacchi has been involved in the activities of the World Climate Research Program (WCRP) for many years and currently is chair of the Joint Scientific Committee that oversees the WCRP. He previously was co-chair of the scientific steering group for its subprogram on Climate Variability and Predictability. Dr. Busalacchi received a B.S. in physics and an M.S. and Ph.D. in oceanography from Florida State University. He has served extensively on NRC activities, including as chair of the Climate Research Committee and the Committee on a Strategy to Mitigate the Impact of Sensor Descopes and Demanifests on the National Polar-orbiting Operational Environmental Satellite System and Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite Spacecraft and as a member of the Committee on Earth Studies. Dr. Busalacchi currently serves as chair of the NRC’s Board on Atmospheric Sciences and as co-chair of the Committee on National Security Implications of Climate Change on U.S. Naval Forces, and he also serves on the Committee on the Assessment of NASA’s Earth Science Program.
LEE-LUENG FU (NAE) is a JPL Fellow and Senior Research Scientist at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology. He has been the Project Scientist for JPL’s satellite altimetry missions since 1988, including TOPEX/Poseidon, Jason, and Ocean Surface Topography Mission/Jason-2. He is currently the Project Scientist for the US/France joint Surface Water and Ocean Topography Mission (SWOT), which is being developed as the next generation altimetry mission for measuring water elevation on Earth. Dr. Fu's research has been focused on the dynamics of ocean waves and currents ranging from small-scale internal gravity waves to ocean basin-scale circulation. He received a B.S. degree in Physics from National Taiwan University (1972) and a Ph.D. in Oceanography from Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (1980). He is a member of the U.S. National Academy of Engineering, and a Fellow of the American Geophysical Union and the American Meteorological Society. Recently he was awarded the COSPAR International Cooperation Medal for his leadership in the development and continuation of satellite altimetry missions.
CHELLE L. GENTEMANN is a senior principal scientist at Remote Sensing Systems, a research-oriented business located in Santa Rosa, California. Dr. Gentemann’s research focuses on air-sea interactions; upper ocean physical processes; microwave remote sensing of geophysical variables, including sea surface temperature and sea ice; and multi-sensor data fusion. She has served on many national and international science teams and working groups, including the NASA Sea Surface Temperature Science Team, the NASA Satellite Ocean Atlas team, the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) GCOM-W AMSR2 Science Team, the International Group for High Resolution SST Science Team and Advisory Council, and the MIT Educational Council. She is currently chair of the NASA PO.DAAC User Working Group. Dr. Gentemann was principal investigator of the Multi-sensor Improved Sea Surface Temperature (MISST) Project that received the National Oceanographic Partnership Program Excellence in Partnering Award. She was part of the Satellite Ocean Atlas Team that was awarded the NASA Group Achievement Award for outstanding achievement in utilization of multiple observations from space for the study of the global oceans. She currently has 28 peer-reviewed papers published and is a member of the AGU, AMS , and IEEE Geoscience and Remote Sensing Society. Dr. Gentemann received her B.S. in earth, atmospheric, and planetary sciences from MIT, her M.S. in physical oceanography from Scripps Institute of Oceanography, and her Ph.D. in meteorology and physical oceanography from the University of Miami. Dr. Gentemann has no prior NRC service.
EFI FOUFOULA-GEORGIOU is Distinguished McKnight University Professor in the Department of Civil Engineering and the Joseph T. and Rose S. Ling Chair in Environmental Engineering at the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities. She is director of the National Science Foundation’s (NSF’s) National Center for Earth-surface Dynamics, and has served as director of St. Anthony Falls Laboratory at the University of Minnesota. Dr. Foufoula-Georgiou’s area of research is hydrology and geomorphology, with special interest on scaling theories, multiscale dynamics, and space-time modeling of precipitation and landforms. She has served as associate editor of Water Resources Research, the Journal of Geophysical Research, Advances in Water Resources, and Hydrologic and Earth System Sciences and as editor of the Journal ofHydrometeorology. She has also served on many national and international advisory boards and panels, including for the National Research Council, the National Science Foundation, NASA, and the European Union. Dr. Foufoula-Georgiou has served as chair of the board of directors of the Consortium of Universities for the Advancement of Hydrologic Sciences, is on the board of trustees of the University Corporation for Atmospheric Research, and is a member of the advisory council of NSF’s GEO Directorate. She has been the recipient of the John Dalton Medal of the European Geophysical Society and the AGU Hydrologic Sciences Award. She is a fellow of the AGU and AMS and an elected member of the European Academy of Sciences. She received a B.A. in civil engineering from the National Technical University of Athens, Greece, and an M.S. and Ph.D. in environmental engineering from the University of Florida. Her NRC service includes the Committee on Challenges and Opportunities in the Hydrologic Sciences, the Committee on Progress and Priorities of U.S. Weather Research and Research-to-Operations Activities, the Committee to Assess the National Weather Service Advanced Hydrologic Prediction Service (AHPS) Initiative, the Water Science and Technology Board, and the Committee on Risk-Based Analyses for Flood Damage Reduction Studies.
STACEY W. BOLAND is a senior systems engineer at Jet Propulsion Laboratory, and is the Project Systems Engineer for ISS-RapidScat. Previously she served as the Observatory System Engineer for the Orbiting Carbon Observatory-2 (OCO-2) Earth System Science Pathfinder mission. She is also a cross-disciplinary generalist specializing in Earth mission concept development and systems engineering and mission architecture development for advanced (future) Earth observing mission concepts. Dr. Boland received her B.S. in physics from the University of Texas, Dallas, and her M.S. and Ph.D. in mechanical engineering from California Institute of Technology. Dr. Boland was awarded NASA’s Exceptional Achievement Medal in 2009. Dr. Boland’s NRC service includes current membership on the Committee on Earth Science and applications from Space, and prior membership on the Planning Committee on Lessons Learned in Decadal Planning in Space: A Workshop, the Committee on the Assessment of NASA’s Earth Science Programs, and the Committee on the Assessment of Impediments to Interagency Cooperation on Space and Earth Science Missions
WALTER S. SCOTT is executive vice president and chief technical officer of Digital Globe, Inc. He founded Digital Globe in 1992 as WorldView Imaging Corporation, which was the first company to receive a high-resolution commercial remote sensing license from the U.S. government. The company later became Digital Globe and, with the launch of the QuickBird-2 satellite that year, offered high-resolution commercial satellite imagery. Dr. Scott also served with the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) where he became program leader for Brilliant Pebbles and was responsible for creating a series of hardware prototypes and conducting flight experiments. He has also served as assistant associate director of the LLNL Physics Department and was responsible for the development of new space-related programs and identification of promising technologies. Dr. Scott was named Entrepreneur of the Year by Ernst & Young in 2004 for the Rocky Mountain Region in the emerging technology category. He has a Ph.D. in computer science from the University of California, Berkeley. He is currently a member of the NRC Committee on Implementation of a Sustained Land Imaging Program and was a member of the Committee on Earth Studies.
WILLIAM F. TOWNSEND is an independent aerospace consultant. He is also part time advisor with Stellar Solutions, Inc., and he is also co-owner of Townsend Aerospace Consulting, LLC. Previously, he worked at Ball Aerospace and Technologies Corporation. Mr. Townsend joined Ball as the vice president and general manager of the Civil Space Systems Strategic Business Unit; his concluding position was vice president of exploration systems. Mr. Townsend had a long career at NASA prior to his appointment at Ball. At Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC) he was deputy center director where he oversaw the development, launch, and operation of all GSFC instruments, spacecraft, and missions and was closely involved with almost 60 missions during his NASA career, including more than 30 missions while at GSFC. At NASA Headquarters in the Earth Science Enterprise area, he held the positions of acting associate administrator, deputy associate administrator, deputy division director, and flight program branch chief and was program manager of the TOPEX/Poseidon, NASA Scatterometer, and Radarsat programs (all international). At the NASA Wallops Flight Facility, Mr. Townsend served as the SeaSat Radar Altimeter Experiment manager, aerospace technologist, and electronic technician apprentice. He is the recipient of two presidential rank, meritorious executive awards, two NASA Distinguished Service Medals, the NASA Outstanding Leadership Medal, the GSFC Robert C. Baumann Memorial Award for Mission Success, the NASA Exceptional Service Medal, and the French Space Agency’s Bronze Medal. He holds a BSEE with honors from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University. Mr. Townsend is currently a member of the NRC Committee on the Assessment of NASA’s Earth Science Program and previously served on the Committee on Cost Growth in NASA Earth and Space Science Missions.
INEZ Y. FUNG (NAS) is a professor of atmospheric science at the University of California, Berkeley, where she serves as director of the Berkeley Institute of the Environment. Dr. Fung’s research focuses on the interactions between climate change and biogeochemical cycles, geophysical fluid dynamics, large scale numerical monitoring, remote sensing of earth systems, and atmosphere-ocean interactions and atmosphere-biosphere interactions. She is a member of the National Academy of Sciences, a fellow of the AGU and the AMS, and a recipient of the Roger Revelle Medal of the AGU. Dr. Fung was a contributor to the United Nations Environmental Programme’s IPCC that was awarded the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize for its work. In 2006 she received the World Technology Network Award for the Environment, and in 2005 she was named one of the “Scientific American 50.” Dr. Fung received a her S.B. in applied mathematics and Sc.D. in meteorology from MIT. She is currently a member of the NRC Committee on a National Strategy for Advancing Climate Modeling, and her extensive prior service includes membership on the Earth science and applications from space decadal survey’s Panel on Land-Use Change, Ecosystem Dynamics and Biodiversity.
DAVID L. SKOLE is professor of global change science at Michigan State University (MSU). He has more than 25 years experience with research on the global carbon cycle and climate exchange. Dr. Skole leads the Carbon to Markets Program, a project of MSU that focuses on combining value chains from carbon credits in the carbon financial markets and agro-forestry products for small holders in developing countries. He was instrumental in constructing the first numerical carbon accounting model and has been spearheading the integration of satellite-based remote sensing into carbon accounting models. He is now active in the emerging carbon financial markets and applications of his research to carbon sequestration projects in developing countries. He has more than 100 peer-reviewed publications on land-use change and forestry issues related to carbon emissions and sequestration, including several that have been most influential in the field. He is the author of Beyond Oil: the Threat to Food and Fuel in the Coming Decades that predicted the current oil and food crises. Dr. Skole is past chair of the NSF Advisory Committee on Environmental Research and Education. He is currently Implementation Chairman of the United Nations Program on Global Observations of Land Cover, which is coordinating a monitoring program for land use change worldwide. He has as Ph.D. in natural resources from the University of New Hampshire. His past NRC service includesthe Geographical Sciences Committee, the Panel on Earth Science Applications and Societal Needs, the Panel on Social and Behavioral Science Research Priorities for Environmental Decision Making, the Committee on Ecological Impacts of Road Density, the Committee for Review of the U.S. Climate Change Science Program Strategic Plan, and Committee on the Geographic Foundation for Agenda 21.
STEVEN C. WOFSY (NAS) is the Abbott Lawrence Rotch Professor of Atmospheric and Environmental Science at Harvard University. His research emphasizes sources and distributions of greenhouse gases on urban, regional and global scakes and the impacts of climate change and land use on ecosystems and atmospheric composition. Dr. Wofsy’s extensive research interests include: Terrestrial carbon, effects of forests on climate, and climate in forests; inference of large-scale carbon budgets from atmospheric and land surface data; CO2 as a tracer of atmospheric transport in the upper troposphere and stratosphere; and new instrumentation for measuring atmospheric carbon cycle species (CO2, CO, CH4). Dr. Wofsy has published over 300 journal articles during a career spanning four decades. His awards include the AGU's Macelwane prize and NASA’s Distinguished Public Service Medal. In 2011, he was elected to the National Academy of Sciences. He earned his B.S. in chemistry from the University of Chicago and his M.A. and Ph.D. degrees in chemistry from Harvard University. He has served on the NASA Earth System Science and Applications Advisory and on the NASA Advisory Council as well as on the Carbon Cycle Science Plan Working Group and North American Carbon Program writing group. His recent NRC service includes the Committee on Indicators for Understanding Global Climate Change, the Panel on Atmosphere, the Committee on Methods for Estimating Greenhouse Gas Emissions, and the Committee on Ensuring the Utility and Integrity of Research Data in a Digital Age.
KENNETH C. JEZEK is a professor at the Byrd Polar Research Center in the School of Earth Sciences at Ohio State University (OSU). Before joining OSU’s Byrd Polar Research Center, Dr. Jezek was a geophysicist with the U.S. Army Cold Regions Research and Engineering Laboratory where he conducted research on the electromagnetic and acoustical properties of sea ice in the laboratory and in the Arctic. Earlier in his career, he studied the behavior of the Ross Ice Shelf Antarctica using ice sounding radar data collected during several visits to the Antarctic. He later went on to serve a 2-year period as manager of NASA’s polar oceans and ice sheets program. He led the Radarasat Antarctic Mapping Project and presently is a co-leader of the International Polar Year GIIPSY project, which involves the participation of 12 space agencies. His current interests focus on using VHF/UHF radars, combined with tomographic processing techniques, to construct 3-dimensional images of Greenland and Antarctica as they would appear stripped of their icy cover. He received a B.S. degree in physics from the University of Illinois and his M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in geophysics from the University of Wisconsin, Madison. His recent NRC service include the Panel on the Cryosphere, the Committee on Scientific Accomplishments of Earth Observations from Space, and the Earth science and applications from space decadal survey’s Panel on Climate Variability and Change.
LENNARD A. FISK (NAS) is the Thomas M. Donahue Distinguished University Professor of Space Science in the Department of Atmospheric, Oceanic, and Space Sciences at the University of Michigan. Dr. Fisk was previously the associate administrator for space science and applications (the predecessor to the current Heliophysics and Earth Science divisions) and chief scientist at NASA. He has served as a professor of physics and as vice president for research and financial affairs at the University of New Hampshire. He is a member of the board of directors of the Orbital Sciences Corporation and co-founder of the Michigan Aerospace Corporation. He is an active researcher in both theoretical and experimental studies of the solar atmosphere and its expansion into space to form the heliosphere. Dr. Fisk received his Ph.D. in applied physics from the University of California, San Diego. He is current a member of the Committee on a Decadal Strategy for Solar and Space Physics (Heliophysics). His most relevant recent NRC service includes chair of the Committee on the Role and Scope of Mission-Enabling Activities in NASA’s Space and Earth Science Missions, co-vice chair of the Committee on the Rationale and Goals of the U.S. Civil Space Program, chair of the Space Studies Board, chair of the Planning Committee for Workshop on U.S. Civil Space Policy, chair of the Planning Committee for Decadal Science Strategy Surveys: A Workshop, and chair of the Committee on an Assessment of Balance in NASA's Science Programs.