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Charles McMillan has been appointed director of Los Alamos National Laboratory and president of Los Alamos National Security, LLC (LANS), the company that manages and operates the Lab for the National Nuclear Security Administration. The appointments were announced today by Norman Pattiz, chairman of the LANS Board of Governors, and are effective June 1, 2011.
"We selected the leader who could best build on the scientific and technological momentum at Los Alamos," said Pattiz. "Charlie possesses the necessary skills and experience to lead the Laboratory into a new era of unparalleled excellence in service to the nation. It's a tall order—finding someone who's highly committed and credible in the world of nuclear weapons, global security, and other science missions. In Charlie, the Laboratory has that leader."
McMillan will succeed Michael Anastasio, who announced in January his plans to retire from the Lab. McMillan becomes the 10th director in the laboratory's nearly 70- year history.
McMillan, 56, is the Lab's principal associate director for the Weapons Program, responsible for the science, technology, engineering, and infrastructure enabling the Laboratory to fulfill its nuclear deterrent mission. He has more than 28 years of scientific and leadership experience in weapons science, stockpile certification, experimental physics, and computational science. His career spans both Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory and Los Alamos National Laboratory.
McMillan was selected following a rigorous and competitive national search led by a search committee appointed by the University of California. The candidates interviewed by the search committee had a diverse range of exceptional experience and skills gained in national laboratories, research universities, and other scientific institutions.
"I'm truly honored and thrilled to be leading Los Alamos. This laboratory is rich with history, full of intellectual vitality, and singularly endowed with an innovative spirit," said McMillan. "As director, I'll seek to cultivate a vibrant, creative, and agile scientific enterprise. The goal: continue the Los Alamos legacy of scientific breakthroughs that advance our national and global security interests while offering the promise of broad and beneficial applications for society."
McMillan came to Los Alamos in 2006, following the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) selection of a new university-corporate partnership—LANS—to manage and operate the Lab. McMillan started his career as an experimental physicist at Livermore in 1983. During his two decades there, he held a variety of research and management positions.
He holds a doctorate in physics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and a bachelor's degree in mathematics and physics from Columbia Union College. He has earned two DOE Awards of Excellence, one of them for developing an innovative holographic tool that enhances the ability of scientists to predict nuclear performance. In his new role, McMillan will oversee a budget of approximately $2.5 billion, employees and contractors numbering some 12,000, and a 36-square-mile site of scientific laboratories, nuclear facilities, experimental capabilities, administration buildings, and utilities.
Pattiz praised outgoing Director Anastasio's dedication and 31 years of service to the nation, the University of California, Lawrence Livermore, Los Alamos, and LANS. "Mike has led with distinction, shaping the current stockpile stewardship program, ensuring the reliability of our nuclear deterrent, and fostering a climate of scientific excellence that has led to breakthroughs in supercomputing, AIDS research, plant growth, and hydrogen fuel cells."
About Los Alamos National Laboratory
Los Alamos National Laboratory, a multidisciplinary research institution engaged in strategic science on behalf of national security, is operated by Los Alamos National Security, LLC, a team composed of Bechtel National, the University of California, The Babcock & Wilcox Company, and URS for the Department of Energy’s National Nuclear Security Administration.
Los Alamos enhances national security by ensuring the safety and reliability of the U.S. nuclear stockpile, developing technologies to reduce threats from weapons of mass destruction, and solving problems related to energy, environment, infrastructure, health, and global security concerns.
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