Featured Alumnus: Robert Hanisch ('76)
Lawrence University alumni are devoted to their alma mater and Robert Hanisch could well serve as an exemplar of such devotion. Since graduating in 1976 with a major in physics and serious time spent on piano performance, Bob has returned to Appleton frequently and made numerous contributions to Lawrence and the physics program in particular. After his graduate studies in radio astronomy at the University of Maryland—College Park, Bob was a visiting professor at Lawrence in the fall of 1981 during which he inaugurated the tradition of twice-weekly physics tea (with cookies!). More recently, Bob served as chair of the Physics Advisory Committee, a body that provides regular feedback to the LU physics department on its activities. He recently established a faculty development fund aimed at igniting new faculty research directions and broadening the impact of ongoing faculty research.
Bob’s professional career has been impressive. Following a post-doctoral research fellowship in the Netherlands, Bob joined the Space Telescope Science Institute (STScI), Baltimore, Maryland (which operates the Hubble Space Telescope under contract to NASA), and led various software development, data archiving, and computational support activities. He also directed the development of the Virtual Astronomical Observatory (VAO). The VAO is an ambitious effort to systematize astronomical data and make it available to astronomers and astrophysicists worldwide. Recently Bob moved from STScI to the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) in Gaithersburg, Maryland to which he brings his vast experience in the management of large and complex datasets. He will head a new department responsible for data management and informatics. In addition, he has served in a number of leadership roles with the International Astronomical Union and been a member of numerous advisory committees and review panels.
Bob continues to play the piano, accompanying a friend who is a cellist with the Lyric Opera Orchestra of Chicago and playing in the pit orchestra in amateur theatrical productions. His wife, Susan Neff, is an astrophysicist with NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland. Their daughter, Emma Hanisch, recently graduated from McDaniel College in Westminster, Maryland with a major in psychology.
Featured Alumna: Cindy Regal ('01)
Since graduating from Lawrence summa cum laude in 2001, Cindy Regal has maintained her usual brisk pace. She completed a Ph.D. in BEC physics at the University of Colorado-Boulder in 2006 as a Hertz Fellow, married fellow physicist Dr. Scott Papp, accepted postdoctoral positions at Boulder and then at Caltech, and received prizes recognizing the high quality of her Ph.D. thesis. She then chose to return to Boulder to launch her academic career as a Clare Boothe Luce Assistant Professor of Physics and Fellow at JILA and to expand her family with Scott by way of a son Nolan and daughter Amelia.
Over the past few years, Cindy has built an experimental research group populated by postdocs, graduate students and undergraduates, collaborated with fellow physicists at Boulder, taught a variety of physics courses, received major research and professional grants in support of her research and teaching, and continued to push back the frontiers of atomic/molecular/optical physics in areas such as trapping of a single neutral 87Rb atom with optical tweezers, the exploration of near-quantum behavior of laser-cooled micro-mechanisms, and an examination of the opto-mechanical squeezing of light. Cindy still plays the violin when she gets a chance, and she, Scott, Nolan, and Amelia enjoy treks into Colorado Rockies. The Department of Physics and Lawrence University take great pride in Cindy’s impressive array of accomplishments in these past fourteen years.
Graduates of the Lawrence Physics Program
Friend, Michael (m)
Herman, Alyssa (m)
Hoang, The Gia (m)
Van de Graaff, Michael
Black, Gus (m)
Dempsey, Jack (m)
Qiu, Fangzhou (Frederick)
Van Hoozen, Brian
Corsbie, Chris (m)
Van Camp, Mackie
Vande Hey, Josh