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Speaker Bio - John F. Ahearne 

John F. Ahearne is the Director of the Sigma Xi Ethics Programs. He also serves as Adjunct  Scholar for Resources for the Future, and a lecturer in public policy at Duke University.

Ahearne is a member of the National Academy of Engineering; the Society for Risk Analysis (President 2001-2002); the American Nuclear Society; and the National Council on Radiation Protection and Measurements. 

He was a Fellow with the American Physical Society, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the Society for Risk Analysis, and the American Association for the Advancement of Science. 

Ahearne was the Executive Director of Sigma Xi, The Scientific Research Society, from 1989-96. He worked as the Vice President and Senior Fellow for Resources for the Future from 1984-89.

He served as Commissioner of the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission from 1978-83, and as Chairman of the NRC from 1979-81.

In his career, Ahearne also worked for the White House Energy Office, the Office of the Secretary of Defense; as Deputy and Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense; and as a major in the US Air Force (USAF). He also worked at the USAF Weapons Center on nuclear weapons effects and taught at the USAF Academy, Colorado College, and the University of Colorado in Colorado Springs. 

He has served as -- Chair, National Research Council Committee on the Effects of Nuclear Earth Penetrator Weapon and Other Weapons; Vice-chair, Department of Energy Nuclear Energy Research Advisory Committee; member National Research Council Committee to Assess Plutonium Disposition Technologies; National Research Council Committee on Upgrading Russian Capabilities for Controlling Highly Enriched Uranium and Plutonium; University of California President's Council for Management of the National Laboratories (LANL, LLNL); U.S.-Russian Independent Scientific Commission on Disposition of Excess Weapons Plutonium;; Board of Directors, Wisconsin Energy Corporation.

He is a member of -- The President's Committee of Advisors on Science and Technology Energy Research and Development Panel; National Research Council Committees on Risk Characterization; Electrometallurgical Techniques for DOE Spent Fuel Treatment; and Dual-Use Technologies, Export Controls, and Materials Protection, Control and Accountability; National Academy of Sciences/Institute of Medicine's Committee on Battlefield Radiation Exposure Criteria; National Academy of Sciences Panel on Cooperation with the USSR on Reactor Safety; National Research Council Committees on Nuclear Safety Research, Reactor Panel on Plutonium Disposition Study, Technical Bases for Yucca Mountain Standards. Member. DOE Environmental Management Advisory Board. Member, Defense Science Board studies on Nuclear Obscuration [Nuclear Winter], Journal of Defense Research, and SDI Technology.

Ahearne earned his Bachelor of Engineering Physics from Cornell University in 1957; his M.S. from Cornell University in 1957; an M.A. from Princeton University in 1963; and a PhD in Physics from Princeton University in 1966.