Troy, N.Y. – President Barack Obama yesterday announced his intent to nominate Francine Berman to be a member of the National Council on the Humanities. Berman is the Edward P. Hamilton Distinguished Professor in Computer Science at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.
The National Council on the Humanities, a board of twenty-six distinguished private citizens appointed by the president and confirmed by the Senate, advises the chairman of the National Endowment of the Humanities. The National Council members serve staggered six-year terms. If confirmed, Berman’s term would expire January 26, 2020.
Berman is the U.S. lead of the National Science Foundation-supported Research Data Alliance, a community-driven international organization created to accelerate research data sharing worldwide, through the development and adoption of technical, organizational, and social infrastructure needed to support data-driven innovation. She served as the vice president for research at Rensselaer from 2009-2012. Prior to her arrival at Rensselaer, she was the director of the San Diego Supercomputer Center and also directed the National Partnership for Advanced Computational Infrastructure.
Berman is a fellow of the Association for Computing Machinery, the American Association for the Advancement of Science, and the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, and inaugural recipient of the ACM/IEEE-CS Ken Kennedy Award for "influential leadership in the design, development, and deployment of national-scale cyberinfrastructure." She currently serves as Chair of the Board of Trustees of the Anita Borg Institute, co-Chair of the Advisory Committee for the Computer and Information Science and Engineering Directorate at the National Science Foundation, and is a member of the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation’s Board of Trustees. Berman earned a bachelor’s degree in mathematics from the University of California, Los Angeles, and a master’s and doctoral degree in mathematics from the University of Washington.