Today at Berkeley Lab

Hometown Newspaper Profiles Lab’s New Director

The Toledo Blade announced the appointment of Mike Witherell as the new director of Berkeley Lab in a recent article, which included many anecdotes from those who knew the Ohio native “back in the day.” For example, Witherell’s uncle said his intellectually gifted nephew, who earned his Ph.D. at the tender age of 23, was still “affable and down-to-earth.” More>

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Blake Simmons Named Division Director for Biological Systems and Engineering

Simmons’ appointment begins on Feb. 10. The Biological Systems and Engineering Division is part of the newly formed Biosciences Area. Simmons will retain his position as Chief Scientific and Technology Office and Vice President of the Deconstruction Division at JBEI. More>

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Veteran Physicists Pursue Their Passion Into Retirement

The Lab’s Physics Division recently held a celebration of its most senior scientists, whose combined years of research total more than 1,000 years. Writer Keri Troutman sat down with three of them — (l-r) Herbert Steiner, Geoffrey Chew, and John Kadyk — to talk about their lives and times at Berkeley Lab and in the world of physics. More>

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JBEI appoints new VP and Deputy VP of Fuels Synthesis Division

JBEI CEO Jay Keasling has announced that Aindrila Mukhopadhyay will step into the role of Vice President of the Fuels Synthesis Division. This announcement comes after a national search and interview process. Taek Soon Lee has been named by Mukhopadhyay as Deputy Vice President of the Fuels Synthesis Division. More>

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Lab’s ‘Queen of Communications’ Pam Patterson Retires

Pam Patterson began her working life as a pre-teen picking fruit in the orchards of San Jose. After college she taught English, then served as a policy analyst. In 1992, she came to Berkeley Lab to help lead various communications efforts, first in the Directorate, then in Public Affairs. From the fields to the Hill, it’s been quite the career trajectory…one that ends in retirement on Jan. 15. More>

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Cyclotron Road Researchers Named to Forbes ’30 Under 30 in Energy’ List

Marcus Lehmann, the lead for CalWave, which is developing a WaveCarpet that harnesses the power of ocean waves to produce electricity and freshwater. Nicholas Flanders is a team member of OPUS 12, which intends to take industrial carbon dioxide emissions and transform them into fuels and chemicals using an electrochemical process incorporating novel catalysts and powered by electricity from renewable sources.. More>

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After Stellar 32-Year Career, Senior Science Writer Lynn Yarris Retires

Yarris (left) has reported some of the Lab’s biggest science news over the last three decades, distilling often complex research into language the general public could understand. He received a much-deserved Director’s Achievement Award that honored his tremendous contributions to helping the world understand the incredible work that takes place at Berkeley Lab. More>

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George Smoot Stars in New TV Commercial

A well-known tax software maker has launched a new series of commercials featuring celebrities known for their intellect to prove you don’t need to be a genius to figure out your income tax using the application. One of the ads features Lab physicist and Nobel Prize winner George Smoot. Go here to view the commercial.

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Cherry Murray Confirmed as Director of the Office of Science

Murray — who was confirmed by the Senate on Dec. 10 — will oversee research in the areas of advanced scientific computing, basic energy sciences, biological and environmental sciences, fusion energy sciences, high-energy physics, and nuclear physics. She will support scientific research, and the development, construction, and operation of scientific user facilities. More>

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Jeff Philliber Wants the Lab to Get Up and Dance

As Berkeley Lab’s environmental planner, Jeff Philliber promotes environmental stewardship while helping the Lab look after the health and safety of its employees and neighboring communities. But did you know he can dance? He leads ballroom dancing and Zumba classes every week during the lunch hour. More>

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