Allison M. Macfarlane becomes fifteenth NRC chair
Washington, DC Dr Allison M. Macfarlane, designated by President Obama as chair of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC, www.nrc.gov), was sworn in July 9 as the fifteenth person to lead the agency. She will serve a term ending June 30, 2013. The NRC regulates the civilian use of nuclear materials.
"This is a singular honor. I am grateful to the President for nominating me and to the Senate for confirming my selection," said Macfarlane. "The agency faces multiple challenges. I look forward to working collegially with my fellow commissioners and the excellent, dedicated staff at the NRC to address these issues."
Macfarlane is an expert in nuclear waste issues, and has a doctorate in geology from MIT. Most recently she was an associate professor of environmental science and policy at George Mason University in Fairfax, VA. She has held fellowships at Radcliffe College, MIT, and Stanford and Harvard Universities. From 1998-2000 she was a Social Science Research Fellow-MacArthur Foundation Fellow in International Peace and Security. She has served on National Academy of Sciences panels on nuclear energy and nuclear weapons issues.
From 2010 to 2012 she served on the Blue Ribbon Commission on America's Nuclear Future, created by the Obama administration to make recommendations about a national strategy for dealing with the nation's high-level nuclear waste. Her research has focused on environmental policy and international security issues associated with nuclear energy, especially the back end of the nuclear fuel cycle. In 2006 MIT Press published a book she co-edited, Uncertainty Underground: Yucca Mountain and the Nation's High-Level Nuclear Waste, which explored technical issues at the proposed waste disposal facility at Yucca Mountain, NV.
Macfarlane is the third woman to serve as chair of the commission, and the only person with a background in geology to serve on the commission.
The NRC was formed in 1975 when the Atomic Energy Commission (AEC) was dissolved. The independent NRC took over the AEC's regulatory functions. The NRC has about 4,000 employees in Rockville, MD, and four regional offices.
PG&E appoints new SVP
San Francisco, CA Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) announced in May the appointment of Jesus Soto, Jr as senior vice president of gas transmission, operations, engineering and pipeline integrity. Soto will be responsible for overseeing four major PG&E gas functions: public safety and integrity management; project engineering, design and management; gas transmission; and gas system operations.
"Jesus has a long and powerful track record of building strong teams and safe gas systems," said Nick Stavropoulos, executive vice president of gas operations. "PG&E and our customers are fortunate to have someone with such a strong background working to make our system the best in the country."
Soto will leave his position as vice president of operations services for El Paso Corporation's Pipeline Group to take the new position. He has a degree in civil engineering from the University of Texas-El Paso and a masters in engineering from Texas A&M University.
"I look forward to quickly integrating myself into the PG&E gas operations organization and reinforcing a team and a culture that are driven to operational excellence anchored in public, employee and contractor safety, facility integrity, regulatory compliance and system reliability," said Soto. "In my discussions with the PG&E senior management team, I was impressed by their commitment, and the work they have already accomplished, to transform the gas operations business into the nation's leading natural gas transmission and distribution system that transports and delivers natural gas every day in a safe and dependable manner."
Pacific Gas and Electric Company is one of the largest combined natural gas and electric utilities in the United States. For more info, visit www.pge.com.
Coca-Cola Refreshments offers opportunities for military veterans
Atlanta, GA Coca-Cola has a long tradition of supporting military troops and veterans, dating to the 1940s. With this history in mind, Coca-Cola Refreshments will offer at least 800 employment opportunities to military veterans in 2012.
"Our military personnel have made incredible sacrifices to serve and protect their country and when they return home, they deserve support and recognition from companies like Coca-Cola," said Steve Cahillane, president and CEO of Coca-Cola Refreshments. "It's also in the best interest of companies to consider military vets, who offer a wide variety of skills, diversity of perspective and ingrained leadership and drive."
The recruitment drive will continue throughout the year. Currently Coca-Cola Refreshments, which bottles, markets and distributes Coca-Cola products, employs more than 5,500 veterans in a variety of roles, including technical and IT positions, across its organization.
To guide its efforts in attracting military personnel, Coca-Cola Refreshments has developed a new military recruitment strategy that includes specialized training for company recruiters and hiring managers; a military career website that launched in the summer; partnerships with Department of Defense agencies; and participation in key military career conferences, job fairs and networking events.
Northrop Grumman Foundation awards $50,000 grant to Great Minds in STEM
Falls Church, VA The Northrop Grumman Foundation (www.northrop grumman.com/foundation) has awarded a $50,000 grant to the nationally acclaimed Viva Technology program run by Great Minds in STEM (GMiS). This follows the successful partnership that took place in 2011.
"Through this fast-paced, interactive program, students are inspired and they learn of the exciting and attainable career options in engineering and science," says Sandra Evers-Manly, president of the Northrop Grumman Foundation. "Working side-by-side with Viva Technology and Northrop Grumman volunteers, the young participants will learn from great role models who are pursuing technical degrees or already working in technical careers."
Viva Technology is a GMiS education awareness program that stimulates interest and academic achievement in science, technology, engineering, mathematics (STEM) and computer science. In 2012, Viva Technology programs will take place at Parkland Magnet Middle School in Rockville, MD, and Will Rogers Middle School in Lawndale, CA. Northrop Grumman's Hispanic employee resource group, One Adelante, will coordinate the two Viva Technology programs with GMiS, on behalf of the Northrop Grumman Foundation.
For more information about the Viva Technology program and future programming, please visit www.greatmindsinstem.org/vivatechnology.
Ram Truck brand and the Chrysler Foundation award $50,000 grant to support outstanding Latino students
San Antonio, TX The Ram Truck brand and the Chrysler Foundation have awarded a $50,000 grant to the Hispanic Scholarship Fund (HSF), the nation's largest provider of college financial aid for Latino students. The grant was announced in May by Fred Diaz, president and CEO of Ram Truck brand and Chrysler de Mexico, part of Chrysler Group LLC. Diaz spoke at the International Hispanic Network's gala and awards ceremony in San Antonio, TX.
"I believe what has anchored me through the ups and downs at Chrysler are my roots," Diaz told the audience. "Despite being somewhat underprivileged in my younger years, I have very fond memories of growing up in a warm, close-knit, densely populated Hispanic community where everyone looked out for each other, respected one another and where humility was and continues to be a cherished value."
In December 2011, Diaz announced a similar $50,000 grant to HSF during the Michigan Hispanic Chamber of Commerce's annual Fiesta Hispana gala in Dearborn, MI. The newly announced Hispanic Scholarship Fund/Chrysler Scholarship Program continues a twenty-five-year relationship between the Chrysler Foundation and HSF. Over the years HSF has received twenty-six grants from the Foundation totaling more than $800,000.
Founded in 1975, the Hispanic Scholarship Fund works to address the barriers that keep many Latinos from earning a college degree. For more information about the Hispanic Scholarship Fund, please visit www.hsf.net.
Pushpendu Pal promoted to SVP of information technology at CVS Caremark
Woonsocket, RI Pushpendu Pal has been promoted to SVP of the information technology division of the CVS Caremark prescription benefit management (PBM) business.
Pal joined CVS Caremark in April 2011 as the leader of member, clinical and client services, which is responsible for all customer and client-facing applications. In April 2012, Pal assumed the leadership of the entire PBM IT organization. His responsibilities include leading the division in delivering internal application services and deploying information technology that supports the overall growth of the PBM business.
"It's an exciting opportunity for me," said Pal. "The first year I spent at CVS Caremark I got to formulate some strategies to elevate how we support the business, and now, in my new role, I can focus on the successful implementation of that vision."
Before CVS Caremark, Pal was the CTO and global leader of enterprise operations in IT services at Hewitt Associates. He also served as CTO and vice president of IT at WellPoint Inc and as chief information officer of Bank One Financial Services. Prior to that, Pal was manager and chief architect of Novus Financials.
"In a very short amount of time Pal proved that he was the person who would bring us the kind of leadership style that will assuredly inspire his very talented and innovative team," says Jon Roberts, COO of the PBM group. "His creative, out-of-the-box approach to technology complements who we are as a pharmacy innovation company."
HBCU conference stresses entrepreneurship and technology
Montgomery, AL In March, Alabama State University (ASU) and MBE Data Solutions & Technology Inc staged a second entrepreneurship conference aimed at historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs). The conference focused on science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) in education and entrepreneurship. Speakers included many African American tech leaders.
Presenters included Michael Hubbard of the Oak Ridge Institute for Science and Education, Anthony Junior of the Office of Naval Research, and Tuwanda Smith of the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission. In addition to Data Solutions & Technology, sponsors included the Environmental Protection Agency, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, the Federal Aviation Agency, Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman, NASA, and the Securities and Exchange Commission. For more information on the conference, see www.asu-hbcu.org
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