Lamont Weekly Report, March 30, 2012

Jim Gaherty, Bruce Shaw and Felix Waldhauser have each been promoted to Lamont Full Research Professor, effective March 1, 2012.  Donna Shillington and Jason Smerdon have been appointed to the Earth Institute faculty --- Congratulations to all.

Howie Matza has organized a webinar presentation Monday, April 2, at 1 PM in the Comer 1st floor seminar room on the subject of lab safety. The webinar is open to all, but is especially important to anyone working in a lab or responsible for the operation of a lab. I've previewed the webinar and recommend your participation. The safety of our staff and
students is paramount, and taking the time to review safety procedures is a fundamental responsibility for all concerned.

The Excom meeting this morning focused on our FY13 budget - which we are presenting to Low in about 10 days - and a continuing discussion on the Observatory's by-laws and the Lamont Research Professor handbook. The by-laws discussion centered on how the Lamont Research Professor track and the Project Scientist track vote on each other's
appointments and promotions. We are making progress, but need to have more discussion before we bring the next iteration of the by-laws to the senior staff.

Thanks to Edie and her colleagues, we are submitting a balanced budget to Low for the next fiscal year. We've been able to achieve a balance using conservative estimates of contract and grant revenue, and holding the line on administrative expenses. We are maintaining our commitments to staff, and have set aside resources for several new initiatives.
Moreover, we are looking well beyond the next fiscal year to couple long-range fiscal and academic planning more closely, so that we can continue to grow our science as needed. I'll go through a fuller explication of the budget with the divisions once the dust has settled.

Three events next week: On Tuesday, there will be another Science and Engineering Social Hour hosted by the EVPR in the Faculty House. On Wednesday evening, we are hosting visitors from the Bruce Museum in Greenwich.

On Thursday, Kuheli Dutt has organized our first (of a hoped-for annual event) Lamont Post-Doc Symposium. This will be a chance for our postdocs to introduce themselves to the whole Observatory, to talk about their science, and to socialize outside the divisions. Please find the time to attend. There will be refreshments throughout the day, and RSVP to
Kuheli if you plan to join the group for lunch.