Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists names Rachel Bronson as new executive director

By | February 2, 2015

Bulletin Media Contact: Janice Sinclaire, [email protected]

CHICAGO –February 2, 2015 – The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists has announced the appointment of Dr. Rachel Bronson as executive director and publisher. Bronson will be responsible for the overall direction and management of the Bulletin’s publishing programs, symposiums, events, and public communications, including announcements about the Doomsday Clock. Bronson will join the Bulletin late in February, succeeding Kennette Benedict, who is retiring after nine years in the executive director's post.

Bronson comes to the Bulletin from the Chicago Council on Global Affairs, where she served in a number of capacities over the last eight years. During her tenure as vice president of studies, she helped to put the council onto the University of Pennsylvania’s 2013 global think tank ranking, where it was listed as the #11 “think tank to watch” and honored as producing the #5 “best policy study/report by a think tank.” Previously, she was a senior fellow and director of Middle East studies at the Council on Foreign Relations, a senior fellow for international security affairs at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, and a fellow at Harvard University's Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs.

“We are delighted that Rachel Bronson will be leading the Bulletin” said Lee Francis, Chair of the Governing Board. “Rachel is an expert in a broad portfolio of global policy issues. With that knowledge and her considerable skill in management and communications, she will build on the Bulletin's many recent achievements.”

“Rachel Bronson has a strong background in energy and environmental issues,” said Robert Rosner, a University of Chicago nuclear power expert and co-chair of the Bulletin’s Science and Security Board, “from questions regarding the oil and tar sands of Canada to the future of nuclear plants in the US at a time of cheap natural gas. She is well-prepared to deal with the critical issues around the challenges of climate change that the Bulletin focuses on. Rachel is extremely knowledgeable and solidly fact-based.”

“Dr. Bronson's wide-ranging experience in the research and analysis of international affairs makes her a great choice for the Bulletin,” said John Mecklin, the editor-in-chief of both the Bulletin's website and bimonthly subscription magazine. "Over the last year, the Bulletin has acquired momentum on the business and editorial fronts, and I know she's going to help accelerate the progress, almost immediately."

Dr. Bronson holds a doctorate in political science from Columbia University. Her writing has appeared in many publications, including Foreign Policy, Foreign Affairs, The National Interest, the New York Times, the Washington Post, and the Chicago Tribune. She has appeared as a commentator on numerous radio and television outlets, including National Public Radio, CNN, al Jazeera, the Yomiuri ShimbunThe Charlie Rose Show, and The Daily Show with Jon Stewart.

Bronson’s appointment comes at the start of the Bulletin’s 70th year, and just days after the organization’s Science and Security Board sparked worldwide media coverage by announcing the movement of the Doomsday Clock to three minutes to midnight.

About the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists:

Founded in 1945 by University of Chicago scientists who had helped develop the first atomic weapons in the Manhattan Project, the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists subsequently created the Doomsday Clock in 1947 using the imagery of apocalypse (midnight) and the contemporary idiom of nuclear explosion (countdown to zero), to convey threats to humanity and the planet. The decision to move the minute hand of the Doomsday Clock is made by the Bulletin's Science and Security Board in consultation with the Governing Board and the Board of Sponsors, which includes 17 Nobel Laureates. The Clock has become a universally recognized indicator of the world's vulnerability to catastrophe from nuclear weapons, climate change, and emerging technologies in the life sciences.

Bulletin Media Contact: Janice Sinclaire, [email protected]

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