Today at Berkeley Lab

At Botanical Garden, Bromeliad Fans Anticipate a Rare Bloom

There’s a lot of excitement this week at the UC Botanical Garden, where a spectacular South American plant that rarely blooms has formed a fast-growing bud. An endangered species native to the high Andes, P. raimondii, the largest of the bromeliads, can grow to nearly 10 feet in height, topped — on the rare occasion that it blooms, usually around age 40 — by a spike as tall as 30 feet high bearing thousands of flowers and up to 6 million seeds. More>

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Lab Retiree Group Honors Ed Lofgren on His 100th Birthday

In February, the Ex-Ls retiree group feted Ed Lofgren on the occasion of his 100th birthday. Lofgren helped develop the Bevatron and later became its first director. He was the overseer of the Bevatron when the first anti-proton was discovered. In recognition of his leadership and expertise he became the first Director of the Accelerator Division. Lofgren received many well wishes as well as a signed certificate from Director Paul Alivisatos. Lofgren, left, is pictured with Anna Morrish (center), and Louise Vogelsberg. The group also former Lab Director Andy Sessler receipt of the Fermi Award.

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Voice Your Suggestions on Diversity & Inclusion Initiative at a Focus Group

How can the Lab expand the recruitment of more women and minorities? What can we do to make sure we have a family-friendly workplace? What are some ways to assess and address equitability issues? The Lab will hold six focus group sessions at different locations to solicit input and suggestions on Lab Director Paul Alivisatos’ Diversity and Inclusion Initiative. As stated in the vision statement for the initiative, the Lab seeks to foster a diverse workforce — in experience, perspective and background — and culture of inclusion in order to attract and engage the brightest minds and further the Lab’s record of scientific excellence and groundbreaking innovation. The sessions will be led by Chief Human Resources and Diversity Officer Vera Potapenko and Physics Division Director Natalie Roe, co-leads of the initiative.


Tuesday, May 20, noon – 1 p.m., Building 971-108 Aspen (OCFO)

Tuesday, May 27, 12:30 – 1:30 p.m., Building 977-141 (Potter St.)

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May 17 Fair Celebrates Asian American/Pacific Islander Heritage Month

May is Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) Heritage Month. The White House issued a 2014 Presidential Proclamation to commemorate the history and heritage of the AAPI community in the United States. This year, San Francisco will be hosting the “Asian Heritage Street Celebration” in front of the Civic Center and the Asian Art Museum, leading up to the Little Saigon neighborhood. The fair will be held on Saturday, May 17, from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. KQED has compiled a list of heritage month programming and resources available here. Learn more about the Lab’s Asian Association by contacting President Larry Guo.

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Sustainable Berkeley Lab Hosts Earth Day Events Next Week

Sustainable Berkeley Lab is hosting several events next week to celebrate Earth Day 2014. On Monday at noon in Perseverance Hall, Chief Sustainability Officer John Elliott will lead a brown-bag conversation with staff on sustainability efforts at the Lab. On Tuesday, employees can join the “Bathroom Brigade” to help conserve water and drop off their personal electronics at an e-waste collection from 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. at the cafeteria. On Friday, join the “Fume Hood Watch” to learn how to reduce energy use in the lab. More>

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Lab’s Back-Up Care Program Hosts Open House for Employees

Bright Horizons, the Lab’s Back Up Dependent Care Program administrator, is hosting an open house event on Tuesday, April 22, from 9 a.m. to noon and 3 to 6 p.m. for Lab employees at their Bayer location, 921 Parker Street (entrance on 8th Street) in Berkeley. At this event, you will learn more about your back-up care benefits, as well as see the Bright Horizons at Bayer facility and its learning spaces, meet their staff, and ask any questions you may have about this facility. For additional information about this event, call (510) 649-1893 or e-mail bayer.ca@brighthorizons.com. Go here for more information on the Lab’s Back Up Dependent Care Program. Download a flyer here.

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Volunteers Needed for Daughters and Sons to Work Day on April 24

Lab volunteers are needed to help with Daughters and Sons to Work Day(DSTW) on Thursday, April 24. Assist with hands-on activities during the Science Festival, chaperone a group of school-aged guests, or help with workshops and other duties throughout the day. Volunteers receive a free lunch and Berkeley Lab volunteer t-shirt. To help with one of the Lab’s most popular annual events, complete the Volunteer Registration Form. Learn more about the activities and schedule here.

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Earth Day: E-Waste Drop-Off for Personal Electronics on April 22

Sustainable Berkeley Lab is excited to partner with the US Postal Service this Earth Day, Tuesday, April 22, to offer our employees free recycling of unwanted personal electronics. Drop-off at the main site will be at the Cafeteria between 11 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. If you cannot make this time, volunteers can pick up personal e-waste items. Drop-off locations are also anticipated at offsite Lab facilities. Go here to learn more about the event, including items that qualify, security of personal information, and environmental benefits of this program. Visit BlueEarth.usps.gov for more information on this Postal Services program now available to employees.

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‘Daughters and Sons to Work Day’ is April 24

Employees are invited to bring a youngster, be it a family member, relative, or friend, to the Lab for Daughters and Sons to Work Day (DSTW) on Thursday, April 24. The event includes hands-on experiments, a science festival, lunch, and an ice cream social, among other activities. DSTW is open to children ages 9 to16 and cost is $30 per child. Go here for additional information, including registration and volunteer opportunities.

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Cleantech Open Hosts ‘Year of the Battery’ Talk on April 23

Cleantech Open, the world’s largest accelerator for cleantech startups, is hosting a dinner presentation on “The Year of the Battery: Taking Batteries From Bottleneck to Breakthrough” on Wednesday, April 23, in Fremont. The event, which will focus on battery innovation challenges, initiatives, and financing models, includes Berkeley Lab researcher Venkat Srinivasan, who heads the Energy Storage and Distributed Resources Department in the Environmental Energy Technologies Division. Go here for more information and to register.

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