Science and Tech Leaders Jim Gates, Theresa Mayer, and Allison Scott Join the Federation of American Scientists Board

FAS thanks Vice Chair Dr. Rosina Bierbaum for her 20+ years of service

Washington, DC – June 7, 2024 – The Federation of American Scientists (FAS) today announced the addition of three new members to its board of directors, and celebrated Dr. Rosina Bierbaum, who is stepping down as board vice-chair after serving on the board for more than 20 years, helping to grow the science organization into a leading voice in science policy. The three new members to serve the nonpartisan organization include Drs: Jim Gates, Theresa Mayer, and Allison Scott.

“These changes on the FAS board represent a milestone for the organization. First, we owe so much to the multi-decade dedication of Dr. Rosina Bierbaum, whose vision and tireless stewardship of the organization have paved the way for our success. Rosina, thank you,” said Dan Correa, CEO of FAS.

He continued: “Second, it is an honor to welcome to the board three leaders who each bring a new perspective and expertise that will help guide the organization as we refine an ambitious, expanded vision for impact. They all exemplify the highest standards of science and technology leadership, scholarship and service.”

“My time leading this board could never have been as enjoyable or as impactful without my partnership with Rosina Bierbaum,” FAS Board Chair Gilman Louie added. “We believe Jim Gates, Theresa Mayer and Allison Scott are the right people to carry on the stewardship that Rosina exemplified.”

New Arrivals to the FAS Board

Jim Gates (full bio here)


Dr. Sylvester James (“Jim”) Gates Jr.
works at the boundary of physics and mathematics. He is a theoretical physicist at the University of Maryland, where he is a University System Regents Professor, the John S. Toll Professor of Physics, and a College Park Professor. He also holds the Clark Leadership Chair in Science at the University of Maryland and is also a Professor of Public Policy in the School of Public Policy. Gates earned two Bachelor of Science degrees (in physics and mathematics) and his Ph.D. in physics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Gates co-authored Superspace: One Thousand and One Lessons in Supersymmetry, the first comprehensive book on supersymmetry in 1984, and has since authored more than 200 research papers. Among his many accomplishments and awards: he became the first African American to hold an endowed chair in physics at a major U.S. research university; received the National Medal of Science – the highest award given to scientists in the U.S. – from President Obama (2013); and his 2015 essay “Thoughts on Creativity, Diversity and Innovation in Science & Education” was cited in the Supreme Court decision known as “Fisher v. Texas.” He served seven years on the President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology (PCAST), under President Obama.  2024 marks fifty-three consecutive years of university-level teaching at institutions as diverse as Caltech, Howard University, Gustavus Adophus College, MIT, Brown University, and the University of Maryland. Gates regularly appears in documentaries and other media, in addition to his ongoing technical work on supersymmetry, supergravity, and superstring theory.

Theresa Mayer (full bio here)

Dr. Theresa S. Mayer is Carnegie Mellon University’s Vice President for Research, providing leadership for the University’s research enterprise and advocating for the role that science, technology, and innovation play nationally and globally. She is internationally recognized for her research in applications of nanotechnology, enabling a wide range of novel structures from low-power integrated nanosensor circuits to nanostructured gradient index optical components. In addition to being Carnegie Mellon University’s Vice President for Research, Mayer holds joint faculty appointments in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering and the Department of Materials Science and Engineering in the College of Engineering. Previously, she was at Purdue University, where she oversaw Purdue’s research enterprise as Executive Vice President for Research and Partnerships and a professor of electrical and computer engineering. Prior to that Mayer served as Vice President for Research and Innovation and as a professor of electrical and computer engineering at Virginia Tech. She has more than 350 technical publications, invited presentations and tutorials, and holds eight patents. Several of her co-inventions have been transitioned into commercial products. Mayer’s  research is enabling a wide range of novel structures from low-power integrated nanosensor circuits to nanostructured gradient index optical components.

Allison Scott  (full bio here

Dr. Allison Scott is the CEO of the Kapor Foundation, which focuses at the intersection of racial justice and technology and works to remove barriers in access and opportunity, such that the promise and potential of technology can be harnessed to create a more equitable future. Under her leadership, the Foundation works to: (a) expand equity in K-12 computer science education, (b) increase diversity within tech companies and VC firms, and (c) advance equitable tech policy to transform the technology ecosystem. The Foundation’s strategies include producing research, deploying strategic grants, supporting policy advocacy, and investing in tech entrepreneurs and venture funds. Dr. Scott is currently a Principal Investigator on multiple national grants to expand equity in computer science education and in her previous role as the Chief Research Officer, authored foundational research on inequity in CS education and disparities in the tech sector. Previous positions included: Chief Research Officer at the Kapor Center; Program Leader for the National Institutes of Health’s Enhancing the Diversity of the Biomedical Workforce Initiative; Director of Research and Evaluation for the Level Playing Field Institute, and Data Analyst for the Education Trust-West. Dr. Scott holds a Ph.D. in Education from the University of California, Berkeley and a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from Hampton University.  

With Thanks for Dedicated Service to the FAS Board

Rosina Bierbaum (full bio here)

Dr. Rosina Bierbaum, FAS Vice Chair, will step away after more than 20 years of service to the FAS board. Bierbaum’s research is on the interface of science and policy—principally on issues related to climate change adaptation and mitigation—at the national and international levels. Her experience extends from climate science into foreign relations and international development. Bierbaum served for two decades in both the legislative and executive branches of the U.S. Government, and ran the first Environment Division of the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy. Bierbaum’s distinguished career includes university teaching, government service in the White House, influential writing on climate change (including 1993’s Preparing for an Uncertain Climate), as well as numerous other awards, publications, and board positions. Bierbaum holds an appointment in the School of Public Health at Michigan, and in the School of Public Policy at the University of Maryland. She has lectured on every continent, and in more than 20 countries. Bierbaum earned a BA in English, a BS in biology, and a Ph.D. in ecology and evolution.

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ABOUT FAS

The Federation of American Scientists (FAS) works to advance progress on a broad suite of contemporary issues where science, technology, and innovation policy can deliver dramatic progress, and seeks to ensure that scientific and technical expertise have a seat at the policymaking table. Established in 1945 by scientists in response to the atomic bomb, FAS continues to work on behalf of a safer, more equitable, and more peaceful world. More information at fas.org.