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Forum guest Michael McGeary and his partner, Phillip Smith, argue for a balanced R&D portfolio in Science.
Dr. Nicholson is chief executive officer of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). AAAS was formed in 1848 and is today the country's leading general scientific organization with more than l4O,OOO individual members and nearly 300 affiliated scientific and engineering societies and academies of science. Dr. Nicholson also is the Publisher of Science; the world's leading scientific journal.
Before joining AAAS in 1989, Dr. Nicholson was Assistant Director for Mathematics and Physical Sciences at the National Science Foundation (NSF), a position to which he was nominated by President Reagan and confirmed by the U.S. Senate in 1985. Prior to that he held a number of senior positions at NSF, including executive director of the National Science Board Commission on Precollege Education in Mathematics, Science and Technology (1982-83) and NSF staff director and acting deputy director (1993-85). Before joining NSF in 1970, Dr. Nicholson was associate professor of chemistry at Michigan State University.
Dr. Nicholson has served as executive secretary for the President's Committee on the National Medal of Science, U.S. editor for chemical Technology and Biotechnology, and been a member of the Committee on Chemistry of the American Chemical Society, the editorial advisory boards of Analytical Chemistry and Chemical & Engineering News, the Visiting Committee for the National Institute of Standards and Technology, and the Presidentially-appointed National Committee on Superconductivity. He also has served as vice-chairman of the Commission on Physical Sciences of the National Academy of Sciences, and as member of the Science Policy Advisory Committee to the Committee on Science, Space and Technology in the U.S. House of Representatives. He currently is chairman of Genentech's Education Advisory Board, co-chairman of the Council on Competitiveness National Affiliates, Treasurer and Director of the Quality Education for Minorities Network, a Trustee of the Gordon Research Conferences, and a member of the President's Advisory Committee for the Chemical Heritage Foundation. He has received a number of awards, including the NSF Distinguished Service Award, The Iowa State University Alumni Citation of Merit, the Presidential Distinguished Rank Award, and honorary Doctore of Humane Letters from the Mount Sinai Medical Center of the City University of New York. He is a member of Phi Eta Sigma, Sigma Xi, the American Chemical Society, and a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.
A native of Des Moines, Iowa, Dr. Nicholson received a B.S. degree in Chemical Technology from Iowa State University and a Ph.D. from the University of Wisconsin. He has published a number of research papers in fields of electrochemistry and application of computers, one of which was identified in 1986 as among the 30 most cited papers in the physical sciences.