June 2014 Letter from the Acting Director

With the late arrival of Spring to Washington, May was a month of dramatic changes at Carnegie. DTM's Director, Lindy Elkins-Tanton, was wooed away from DTM by the offer to become the Director of the School of Earth and Space Exploration at Arizona State University.  I received the honor of being asked to assume the Acting Director role until a search for a permanent Director can be initiated. At her send off gala on May 9, we all offered our thanks to Lindy for her guidance and initiation of a number of new activities, for example a diverse postdoctoral fellow mentoring program, that are likely to become new traditions for the department.  All at DTM wish only the best for her future and look forward to continued interactions because, after all, once a DTM’er, always a DTM’er!

Not long after Lindy’s departure, we received news of the selection of a new President for the Carnegie Institution, Dr. Matthew P. Scott, currently Professor of Developmental Biology, Genetics, and Bioengineering at the Stanford University School of Medicine.  Dr. Scott will be assuming the helm of the Institution in September and will be visiting DTM for the first time in mid-June.  We very much look forward to welcoming Dr. Scott to the Carnegie family and working with him to continue the tradition of excellence in the research efforts of the Institution.

Also of note in May, DTM staff scientist Diana Roman continued our recent tradition of packing the Greenewalt Auditorium to overflowing with her neighborhood lecture on  “The Secret Life of Quiescent Volcanoes”.  After the lecture, one neighbor asked the question “What part of your talk shouldn’t cause us to be terrified?”  Diana’s response provided a good summary of why DTM scientists do what they do in her statement that we study the natural world to understand the processes at work around us so that we can appreciate the wonders of nature rather than be scared of them.

Best regards,
Richard Carlson
Acting Director, Terrestrial Magnetism
Carnegie Institution for Science