Computer Scientist Named to President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology

April 29, 2009

AUSTIN, Texas — William H. Press, the Warren J. and Viola M. Raymer Professor in Computer Sciences and Integrative Biology at The University of Texas at Austin, has been named to the President's Council of Advisors on Science and Technology (PCAST).

Press was among 20 scientists and engineers named to the council by President Obama in a speech at the National Academies.

Press has published more than 150 papers in the areas of computational biology, theoretical astrophysics, cosmology and computational algorithms. He is senior author of the "Numerical Recipes" textbooks on scientific computing, with more than 400,000 hardcover copies in print. His research is in bioinformatics and whole-genome genetics.

At The University of Texas at Austin, Press is affiliated with the Institute for Computational Engineering and Sciences and the Institute for Cellular and Molecular Biology. He is also a senior fellow at the Los Alamos National Laboratory in Los Alamos, N.M., a member of the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) since 1994 and a founding member of NAS's Computer and Information Sciences section.

PCAST will advise the president and vice president in the many areas where understanding of science, technology and innovation is key to forming responsible and effective policy.

"This council represents leaders from many scientific disciplines who will bring a diversity of experience and views," said President Obama. "I will charge PCAST with advising me about national strategies to nurture and sustain a culture of scientific innovation."

Obama's PCAST includes three Nobel laureates, two university presidents, four MacArthur Prize Fellows and 14 individuals who are elected members of one or more of the National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, Institute of Medicine and American Academy of Arts and Sciences. It includes members from across the country, representing a broad array of fields and professional activities in science and technology.

For more information, contact: Lee Clippard, College of Natural Sciences, 512-232-0675.