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By Emily Conover
APS members took to the polls in May and June to select new leadership, and the votes have been tallied. The majority of voters in the annual general election chose Roger Falcone to fill the office of vice president beginning January 1, 2016. Falcone, a professor of physics at the University of California, Berkeley, is the director of the Advanced Light Source, an x-ray synchrotron facility at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory.
Under the APS governance structure, the vice president joins the presidential line, eventually ascending to the presidency after one-year terms as vice president and then president-elect.
In January 2016, the current president, Samuel Aronson, will step down to become past president, and the current president-elect, Homer Neal, will assume the position of president. The current vice president, Laura Greene, will become president-elect, and Falcone will assume the vice presidency. Falcone will become president of the Society in 2018.
“I’m very pleased to be able to serve the Society and the physicists within APS,” Falcone said. “I will be spending a lot of time listening, to understand the work of the APS more close-up, and also hearing from people who are members of the Society.”
Falcone also cited the important role that physicists can play in influencing science policy in the nation. “APS can strengthen the collective impact of physicists, and improve the educational, industrial, private, and government institutions within which science is carried out,” Falcone said in his candidate statement.
The election is the first since the corporate reform that was instituted last year, which included amendments to the APS Constitution & Bylaws and Articles of Incorporation. Members voted to adopt the reform in November 2014.
As a result of the restructuring, this year’s election marks the first time APS members have voted for a treasurer, a position on the APS Board of Directors. James Hollenhorst, senior director of technology for Agilent Technologies, will be the first elected treasurer of APS. Past president Malcolm Beasley is serving as interim treasurer.
“I look forward to making a contribution to the Society,” Hollenhorst said. “It is a new role, and so what’s done by the first person in that role will have an impact on what the definition of that role is going forward. So it’s a responsibility, but also an opportunity to make the best of the new structure of the APS.”
In his candidate statement, Hollenhorst cited sound financial management as a top priority. “Without it, none of the exciting goals of APS will survive the test of time.”
One important challenge is the changing face of scientific publishing, Hollenhorst added. “Open access is the rallying cry from the government, the universities, and from the readers and authors of our journal articles; but someone has to pay for the added value that APS brings.”
Voters elected Deborah Jin of the National Institute of Standards and Technology and the University of Colorado, Boulder to the position of chair-elect of the APS Nominating Committee. “It’s an honor to be chosen. I’m excited to participate in this way in APS governance, to help out, and also just to learn more about what’s going on at APS,” Jin said.
The Nominating Committee prepares a roster of candidates for APS elections each year. Jin will serve for one year as chair-elect before becoming chair of the committee.
Two council positions were on the ballot in this year’s election. The APS Council of Representatives comprises four general councilors, four international councilors, the presidential line, the treasurer, councilors representing APS committees, and councilors representing the divisions, forums, and sections. The Council’s responsibilities include joint oversight of Society publications with the Board of Directors, approval of science policy statements, election of APS fellows, prizes and awards bestowed by APS, and final approval of amendments to the Constitution & Bylaws.
The position of international councilor will go to Johanna Stachel, a physicist at the University of Heidelberg. Stachel has previously served as president of the German Physical Society, and is currently serving as vice president.
Bonnie Fleming, a physicist at Yale University, was elected as general councilor. Fleming is the co-spokesperson of the MicroBooNE neutrino experiment, and has served on a number of APS committees, including the Division of Particles and Fields (DPF) Coordinating Panel for Advanced Detectors, and the APS DPF Nominating Committee.
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Editor: David Voss
Staff Science Writer: Emily Conover
Contributing Correspondent: Alaina G. Levine
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