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News Release 08-033

Tim Killeen to Become NSF Assistant Director for Geosciences

Appointment begins in July 2008

Newly-appointed NSF Assistant Director for the Geosciences

Timothy Killeen will become NSF Assistant Director for the Geosciences in July 2008.

February 26, 2008

This material is available primarily for archival purposes. Telephone numbers or other contact information may be out of date; please see current contact information at media contacts.

Dr. Arden L. Bement, Jr., director of the National Science Foundation (NSF), today announced the appointment of  Timothy Killeen to become NSF Assistant Director for the Geosciences. Killeen, currently director of the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) and president of the American Geophysical Union, will assume his new post July 1.

"Tim Killeen's vision for the geosciences will be invaluable in guiding NSF during this renaissance period for addressing the scientific challenges facing the Earth," Bement commented. "We couldn't be more pleased."

In his new role, Killeen will oversee the Geosciences directorate (GEO), which has a fiscal year 2008 budget of $752 million and supports research in the atmospheric, earth and ocean sciences, including climate processes and changes, the water cycle, and natural disasters such as earthquakes, tsunamis and severe storms.

Killeen has served as director of the NCAR since 2000. Prior to that, he was professor of atmospheric, oceanic and space sciences, associate vice president for research, and director of the Space Physics Research Laboratory at the University of Michigan. He holds a doctorate in atomic and molecular physics and a Bachelor of Science with first-class honors from University College London. He has held leadership roles in the geosciences for many years, including chairing numerous national committees and advisory panels. He has been president of the American Geophysical Union since 2006, and is a member of the National Academy of Engineering. His research is in satellite measurements and modeling of the upper atmosphere.

Rick Anthes, president of the University Corporation for Atmospheric Research, which manages NCAR, said, "In his new capacity, Tim will be able to guide the broader community with the same energy and forward thinking that he has brought to NCAR for the past eight years. While we are sorry to be losing him, we will all benefit from his leadership at NSF."   

Killeen remarked, "This is a critically important time for the geosciences and I'm excited and pleased to become a part of the NSF leadership team as we move ahead in analyzing and solving problems of global importance."


Media Contacts
Diane E. Banegas, NSF, (703) 292-8070, email:

The U.S. National Science Foundation propels the nation forward by advancing fundamental research in all fields of science and engineering. NSF supports research and people by providing facilities, instruments and funding to support their ingenuity and sustain the U.S. as a global leader in research and innovation. With a fiscal year 2021 budget of $8.5 billion, NSF funds reach all 50 states through grants to nearly 2,000 colleges, universities and institutions. Each year, NSF receives more than 40,000 competitive proposals and makes about 11,000 new awards. Those awards include support for cooperative research with industry, Arctic and Antarctic research and operations, and U.S. participation in international scientific efforts.

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