About Me

I received a B.A. in Physics in 1986 from Johns Hopkins University and a Ph.D. in Astronomy & Astrophysics in 1991 from the Pennsylvania State University. I joined the staff of Lowell Observatory in Flagstaff, Arizona in 1992 as a postdoctoral research fellow, specializing in stellar astrophysics and the variations of the Sun and sun-like stars. In 1998, I became the Observatory’s Associate Director for Education and Special Programs, and since 2010, I have served as Executive Director. In 2015, the Observatory completed construction and commissioning of the $53M Lowell Discovery Telescope (LDT); and in 2023, the Observatory completed a $53M capital campaign to build the Kemper and Ethel Marley Foundation Astronomy Discovery Center (ADC), scheduled to open in late 2024. In the past dozen years, Lowell has received well over $100M through University partnerships for access to the LDT; through foundation, corporate, and individual gifts in support of the ADC; and through philanthropic contributions to many other programs.

I am an inaugural Fellow of the American Astronomical Society, and from 2017 to 2022, I served as Chair of the Society’s standing committee on Light Pollution, Radio Interference, and Space Debris. I also presently serve as Chair of the Solar Observatory Council for the Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy.

During my tenure as Lowell’s Executive Director, I have provided consulting services to a number of external organizations, including the Yerkes Future Foundation, the Fountain Hills Dark Sky Association, and numerous non-profit organizations around Flagstaff, in connection with organizational, financial, and capital project challenges they were facing.

My principal avocation is music, and I have served since 1992 as an assistant organist at the Episcopal Church of the Epiphany in Flagstaff. I have occasionally performed with orchestras and ensembles, and I enjoy creating synthesizer realizations of various works, including my own ragtime, with my home studio.

In the community, I have served as Senior Warden at Epiphany Episcopal, as President of the Board of Directors of the Flagstaff Symphony Orchestra, as President of the Governing Board of Northland Preparatory Academy, and as Chair of the Board of the Northern Arizona Leadership Alliance.

I enjoy reading, board and video games, and training for and participating in triathlons. I live in Flagstaff with my wife, Schenley. We have three grown sons, Jonathan, Benjamin, and Nicholas.

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