Beverly K. Berger
Candidate for Chair-Elect, Nominating CommitteeBiographical Summary
Dr. Beverly K. Berger retired from the US National Science Foundation where she was Program Director for Gravitational Physics from late 2001 through the end of 2011. Previously, she had spent 24 years as a faculty member at Oakland University (Michigan), eventually becoming professor and department chair. She received her undergraduate education in physics at the University of Rochester and her Ph.D. in physics at the University of Maryland. She held postdoctoral positions at the University of Colorado and Yale University. Her research field is theoretical gravitational physics with recent emphasis on singularities and other properties of cosmological spacetimes. She is an APS Fellow. In 1995, she founded and was the first Chair of the APS's Topical Group in Gravitation (GGR), the national organization in this field. She was elected Vice Chair of GGR in 2012. Additional past activities within the APS include membership on the APS Council and chairing the Committee on the Status of Women in Physics, the Publication Oversight Committee, and the selection committees for the Aneesur Rahman Prize for Computational Physics and the Dannie Heineman Prize for Mathematical Physics. She is currently the secretary of the International Society on General Relativity and Gravitation, a member of the Editorial Board of Reports on Progress in Physics, a member of the International Scientific Advisory Board (Fachbeirat) for the Max Planck Institute for Gravitational Physics in Potsdam, a member of the External Advisory Board for the College of Sciences of Rochester Institute of Technology, and a member and ombudsperson of the LIGO Scientific Collaboration.
We live in interesting times. Uncertain and unstable funding --- not just in the US but around the world --- adds an extra challenge to forefront research and on training the next generation of scientists. The APS has played an important role in the past and must continue to lead in the future in the effort to convince government leaders and the public that support for science is critical to our future. Not just the research enterprise but also the education and training of future scientists is at risk. The APS and its members have an obligation and also an opportunity to argue for science, to inspire the next generation of physicists, and to engage the public in the excitement of the quest for discovery. It is also crucial to foster opportunities for groups and nations underrepresented in physics to participate in our field. If elected as Chair of the Nominating Committee, I will seek candidates with the energy, creativity, and vision to maximize the influence and effectiveness of the APS to physics, to physicists, to the broader scientific community, and to society.