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2015 William D. Carey Lecture with Dr. William H. Press

Washington DC, ,

Science to Action: Thoughts on Convincing a Skeptical Public

The 2015 William D. Carey Lecture will be presented by Dr. William H. Press, Warren J. and Viola M. Raymer Professor in Computer Science and in Integrative Biology, University of Texas at Austin; and Vice-Chair, President's Council of Advisors on Science and Technology.

The lecture is free and open to the public.


About Dr. William H. Press

William H. Press is a computer scientist and computational biologist with broad interests in the physical and biological sciences. An experienced manager in both university and national laboratory settings, he is widely recognized for his academic and research accomplishments.

Press holds the Warren J. and Viola M. Raymer Chair in Computer Sciences and Integrative Biology at the University of Texas at Austin. At UT, his affiliations include membership in the Institute for Computational Engineering and Sciences and in the Institute for Cellular and Molecular Biology. Press is also a Senior Fellow (emeritus) at the Los Alamos National Laboratory. In 2009, President Obama named Press as a member of his President's Council of Advisors on Science and Technology (PCAST). In 2011, he was elected president of the American Association for the Advancement of Science for a term beginning in February, 2012.

In his research career, Press has published more than 150 papers in areas of computational biology, theoretical astrophysics, cosmology, and computational algorithms. He is senior author of the Numerical Recipes textbooks on scientific computing, with more than 400,000 hardcover copies in print. Elected to the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) in 1994, he in 2000 became a founding member of NAS's new Computer and Information Sciences section. His current research is in bioinformatics and whole-genome genetics.

Press was for more than two decades Professor of Astronomy and of Physics at Harvard University, during which he served as Department Chair and in various other positions of university service. He taught graduate and undergraduate courses in three departments (physics, astronomy, and applied mathematics), as well as in interdisciplinary university programs. Press was an affiliate of the Center for Science and International Affairs at the Kennedy School of Government, and was for more than 10 years a resident faculty member in Pforzheimer House, an undergraduate residential House of 400 students. His Ph.D. and postdoctoral students have gone on to tenure at universities including UC Berkeley, Princeton, Brown, Johns Hopkins, UCSC, University of Michigan, Ohio State, and elsewhere.

From 1998 to 2004, Press was Deputy Laboratory Director for Science and Technology at Los Alamos National Laboratory. Serving two successive Laboratory Directors, Press' responsibilities at various times included all aspects of managing an R&D organization with an annual budget of $2.0B, employing more than 12,000 people. Significant responsibilities included relations with governmental sponsors and Congressional liason; resource and indirect cost allocation; community and Tribal relations; environment, safety, and health; and workforce issues, particularly those affecting the Laboratory's 4000 technical staff members.