Lamont Weekly Report, September 26, 2008

I met with the Executive Committee of the Engineering School on Monday  - presenting our plans for the Research Professor initiative - a very  good meeting - many shared issues. Dean Gerry Navratil deserves our thanks for enabling these conversations to take place.

It is Open House a week tomorrow - let us hope for more suitable  weather than that experienced presently, and look forward to the usual  great turn out of folks from around the region.

Earth Institute Academic committee meeting on Thursday followed on  Friday by ExCom in the morning and a Faculty meeting in the afternoon  - at both vain attempts were made to understand the possible impacts  of the Wall Street melt-down upon our lives in academia.  It is indeed  a very worrying time - with no previous comparable events upon which  to base a prediction of how the economy will evolve. We are obviously  very concerned by possible changes to the income from our endowment.

Conrad Lautenbacher announced his resignation as head of NOAA  effective October 31st - beginning the inevitable rotation of folks in  key leadership positions in DC as the Administration prepares to  change. Leading NOAA is one of the more impossible jobs in DC, and  Admiral Lautenbacher deserves our thanks for his seven years of  devoted service.

I fly down to South Carolina over the weekend - to see my grand  daughter for the second time in her life. It will be good to see my  son too of course, but I think Hudson (my grand daughter) will win  most of the attention - as two-year-olds tend to do. I will be back in  the office Wednesday, but then back down to DC for the annual UNOLS  meeting talking about the nation's academic fleet. I want to make sure  that all the great work that Langseth has accomplished this year,  despite the delays and difficulties, gets the recognition it deserves.

Have a great weekend,  Mike