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RAS Fellow made Australia's Chief Scientist

Last Updated on Thursday, 29 April 2010 15:01
Published on Wednesday, 01 October 2008 00:00
The Australian Federal Government has named  Professor Penny Sackett, A Fellow of the RAS, as its new chief scientist. 
Making the announcement, the Minister for innovation, industry, science and research, senator Kim Carr, said she would "provide high-level advice to Government, foster relationships with science organisations and industry groups and stimulate community thinking on the big scientific issues of our time."

Professor Sackett was director of the Australian National University's Research School of Astronomy and Astrophysics and Mount Stromlo and Siding Spring Observatories from 2002 to 2007  and remains a professor in the School.She is also involved in governance of the Gemini Observatory and the Hubble Space Telescope Science Institute and a director of the Giant Magellan Telescope, a project to build the world's most powerful optical telescope.

The President of the RAS, Professor Andy Fabian,  said ' We are delighted  that the Australian Government has seen fit to appoint an astronomer as its Chief Scientist and wish her well in this pivotal role' .

No less than 1/3 of the membership of the RAS consists of scientists based outside the UK