David Spergel, Emeritus Professor of Astrophysical Sciences, has received NASA’s Exceptional Public Service Medal for “outstanding leadership of the Nancy Grace Roman Space Telescope’s teams during its initial mission concept and formulation program.” NASA’s recognition statement notes that Spergel “led the science definition team that established the broad and compelling science capabilities” of the Roman Telescope, recommended by the 2010 National Academy of Sciences decadal survey, with the promise that “his legacy of leadership will endure across its ultimate achievements.” The medal, awarded to any non-government individual for important contributions to NASA projects, programs or initiatives, recognizes that Spergel’s scientific leadership of Roman has been equivalent to that of a mission PI in steering the course of this future Great Observatory.
This is Spergel’s second Exceptional Public Service Medal from NASA; in 2017 he received the award as recognition for his service as chair of the Space Studies Board and a member of the NASA Advisory Council. Spergel, formerly Charles A. Young Professor of Astronomy on the Class of 1897 Foundation and Department Chair for many years, is currently President of the Simons Foundation.
Congratulations, David on this well deserved honor!