Laura Cadonati: APS General Councilor

Georgia Institute of Technology

Educational History

  • Postdoc, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (2002-04)
  • Postdoc, Princeton University (2001-02)
  • PhD, Physics, Princeton University (2001)
  • MA, Physics, Princeton University (1998)
  • Laurea, Physics, University of Milan, Italy (1995)

URL for Full Bio or CV

Top 5 Honors, Awards, or Recognition

  • Fellow, American Physical Society (2015)
  • NSF Career Award (2010)
  • Breakthrough Prize in Fundamental Physics, awarded to the LIGO Scientific Collaboration (2016)
  • Gruber Cosmology Prize, awarded to the LIGO Scientific Collaboration (2016)
  • Princess of Asturias Award for Technical and Scientific Research, awarded to the LIGO Scientific Collaboration (2017)

Most Recent APS Volunteer History

  • DGRAV Fellowship Selection Committee (2022)
  • DGRAV Fellowship Selection Committee (2021)
  • DGRAV Chair line (2014-18)

Other Relevant Experience

  • Associate Dean for Research, College of Sciences, Georgia Tech
  • Co-Chair, Panel for Particle Astrophysics and Gravity in the NAS Astro2020 Decadal Survey
  • Deputy Spokesperson, LIGO Scientific Collaboration (2017-19)
  • Member, LIGO Scientific Collaboration (2002-present); the Borexino Collaboration
    (2007-14); the DarkSide Collaboration (2010-14)

Candidate Statement

I am honored to be considered as a candidate for General Councilor of the American Physical Society. If entrusted with this position, I will bring with me a solid academic background in physics research and education, as well as leadership experience within the physics community at national and international levels. My administrative role at an R1 university and commitment to service further amplify my qualifications for this position.

Throughout my research journey in nuclear physics, astrophysics, and gravity, along with my active participation in large scientific collaborations, I have developed an understanding of the interconnectedness and the different traditions in various branches of physics. These insights will enable me to represent the wide constituency of APS.

Leading within the LIGO Scientific Collaboration during groundbreaking discoveries has taught me the significance of collective efforts that rely on interdisciplinary collaborations and the amplification of diverse voices. I also learned that engaging with policymakers, educators, and the public is pivotal in raising awareness of the value and impact of physics research, in fostering scientific literacy, and in garnering the broad public support that makes our scientific endeavors possible.

My engagement with the chair line of DGRAV during its transition from a Topical Group to a Division, my participation in the ASTRO2020 Decadal Survey, and my experience as a university administrator have further molded my perspectives on the values and structure of APS, the power of effective advocacy, the importance of inclusive planning, and the delicate balance between resource limitations and growth ambitions. These experiences have sharpened my ability to navigate complex situations while upholding transparency and inclusivity as guiding principles.

Fundamentally, my strengths and values will drive my contributions as APS General Councilor. I am dedicated to promoting transparency, accountability, and ethical conduct in all aspects of scientific inquiry. I am also committed to creating an environment that warmly welcomes and supports scientists from diverse backgrounds, ensuring equal opportunities for participation and advancement. My key priorities will revolve around supporting early-career researchers, championing equitable representation and opportunities for underrepresented groups within APS leadership and activities, advocating for open data practices, and fostering international collaborations to promote global scientific cooperation. These align with the strong traditions upheld by APS, and I recognize the significant challenges of the current complex international geopolitical landscape and the growing concerns for sustainability and the climate.

I am grateful for the opportunity to be considered for the role of APS General Councilor, to contribute to the growth and success of the Society and to represent its members, and to work together to advance the ever-evolving frontiers of physics.

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Laura Cadonati 2023 General Election

Laura Cadonati