Congratulations to Robin Bell and Ed Cook, who have just been named AGU Fellows, a well-deserved honor signifying great professional achievement. We'll celebrate appropriately as soon as Ed gets back from his latest adventure. Plan on attending the next AGU awards ceremony; a prize will go to the Lamonter who comes closest to guessing which T-shirt Ed will wear.
Yet another honor: Tatiana Rautian was awarded the Reid Medal last week at the annual meeting of the Seismological Society of America. Tanya and her husband, Vitaly Khalturin, worked in our seismology group between 1993 and 2005. They were, and remain, the world's experts on seismicity in Central Asia. During their years in the former Soviet Union, Tanya and Vitaly hosted many of us at their home and expedition outpost in Garm, and later in their warm apartment in Moscow. Vitaly passed on in 2007, and Tanya is now living with her daughter in California. You can get a sense of the impact Tanya and Vitaly had on many of us from the posts on this site:
I am very pleased to report that both Maureen Raymo and Brad Linsley have accepted our offers and will be joining us in the next few months. Mo will become director of the Lamont Core Repository and Brad will direct the Stable Isotope Lab. Both have been game-changers in their fields. This is another excuse for a celebration.
We have gotten positive responses from three of our offers to Lamont Post Doc Fellow candidates, and are waiting to hear from the remaining candidates. We'll have a big announcement as soon as this is settled, hopefully by next week.
Roxie Smith, Steven Rittenberg and Andrew Davidson from the Office of the Provost will be at Lamont next Thursday afternoon for the town hall on Columbia benefits. Once again, I urge you to read the report available on the website: http://hr.columbia.edu/taskforcereport .
The chaos of the federal fiscal year 2011 budget debate is quieting down. Most of the agencies have 60 days from the adoption of the continuing resolution to develop their spending plans. Initial reports from the agencies that fund most of our science are decent, considering the budget macro-environment. We are now turning our attention to the fiscal year 2012 budget documents.
There are meetings of the OMG and Executive Committees next week, so bring your concerns to your Associate Directors and Excom reps. The report of the benefits task force will be on the agenda for both meetings.
If the weather holds this weekend, I'm going to go flying with my son in his nearly fifty-year-old plane. So far, his takeoffs and landings are equal in number.