29 Sep 2017

Dr. Cherry Murray Elected as New Chair of the OIST Board of Governors

Dr. Cherry Murray has been elected as the new chair of the Board of Governors (BOG) of the Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology Graduate University (OIST).  The BOG oversees the implementation of the academic, research, and administrative activities of the university and is its highest executive body.

Cherry Murray is an American physicist with outstanding experience both in research and management. She is Benjamin Peirce Professor of Technology and Public Policy in the John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences and Professor of Physics in the Faculty of Arts and Sciences of Harvard University. 

She was the Director of the Department of Energy’s Office of Science in the United States, from December 2015 until January 13, 2017.  Dr. Murray oversaw $5.5 billion of the Department’s competitive scientific research in the areas of advanced scientific computing, basic energy sciences, biological and environmental sciences, fusion energy sciences, high energy physics, and nuclear physics.

Dr. Murray served as dean of Harvard University’s John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences from July 1, 2009 until December 31, 2014. She was also Principal Associate Director for Science and Technology at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory from 2007 to 2009 and as Deputy Director for Science and Technology from 2004 to 2007. Dr. Murray also held a number of positions at Bell Laboratories from 1978 to 2004. 

Dr. Cherry Murray, new Chair of OIST BOG, with Dr. Torsten Wiesel, outgoing chair

Dr Murray said, “I am very honored to be asked to chair the OIST Board of Governors. OIST is establishing a new model of international science research and education based on interdisciplinary activities by faculty and students who are encouraged to be ambitious and innovative in their work. OIST’s success provides an example not only to universities in Japan but also to universities all around the world.”

Dr. Murray will assume the post on November 1, 2017, and will chair the next meeting of the BOG in February 2018.

President of OIST, Dr. Peter Gruss, commented, “Dr. Cherry Murray is an internationally respected leader in science. Her deep understanding of research and its potential application in innovative industries will be invaluable to the future progress of our university.”

She succeeds Dr. Torsten Wiesel who has been a driving force behind the conception, construction and realization of OIST project since 2002.  He became Co-Chair of the OIST Promotion Corporation in 2005 and Chair of the Board of Governors of the OIST School Corporation in 2011.

Dr. Peter Gruss underlined that, “Torsten Wiesel has guided OIST from the stage of an ambitious idea, all the way through to its current status as one of the world’s leading research universities. We all owe him a debt of gratitude.”


For press inquiries, please contact media@oist.jp.

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