Roger Brissenden Named Deputy Director of the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics
Wednesday, May 12, 2010
News Feature

Dr. Roger Brissenden, Associate Director for High Energy Astrophysics at the CfA, and Program Manager for the Chandra X-ray Center at the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory, has been appointed as the new Deputy Director of the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, in Cambridge, Massachusetts. His new appointment became effective May 3rd.

"Dr. Brissenden brings extensive experience in scientific leadership, management of large programs and complex operations to this position,” stated Charles Alcock, Director of the CfA. “In his past positions, Roger has led with consummate grace and skill. We are fortunate to have him turn his talents to this new opportunity.”

Dr. Brissenden joined the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory in 1990 and from 1993 supervised the development, testing and operation of the Science Center and the Chandra Observatory’s Operations Control Center. As Flight Director, he was responsible for the operation of the Chandra mission, an orbiting X-ray telescope and one of NASA’s four great observatories. He will continue to serve as the Program Manager for the Chandra X-ray Center.

Dr. Brissenden is an Associate of the Harvard College Observatory, a member of the American Astronomical Society, and is Chair or member of a number of committees that review the operation of present and future ground and space-based astronomy telescopes. In 2007, in recognition of his many achievements and his even greater potential to lead critical Smithsonian initiatives, Brissenden was selected for the inaugural Smithsonian Leadership Development Program. In 2009, he served as a special projects advisor to the Under Secretary for Science at the Smithsonian.

He earned a B. Sc. (First Class Honors) in Physics from the University of Adelaide (1985), and a PhD in Astronomy from the Australian National University (1990).