Candidates for Vice President  (1 will be elected)


Ursula Gibson

Ursula GibsonUrsula Gibson Profile
Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Norway

Ursula Gibson received a Ph.D. in physics from Cornell University in 1982.  During her doctoral work she held a Bell Laboratories Graduate Research Program for Women grant, and spent two summers working at Bell Labs. After Cornell, she joined the faculty of the University of Arizona Optical Sciences Center, and was promoted to associate professor before moving to the Thayer School of Engineering at Dartmouth College in 1990. She currently holds a professorship in the Physics department at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU), where she has been since 2010.   She is also an adjunct professor in the Department of Applied Physics at the KTH Royal Institute of Technology and the Chemistry Department of Dartmouth College.

She has held visiting positions at the United States Air Force Academy, NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center, Tampere University of Technology (Finland), Chalmers University (Sweden), and the University of Queensland (Australia), among others. She was a NASA/ASEE Visiting Research Fellow in 1997 and 1998 and participated in the 2001 National Academy of Engineering 'Frontiers in Engineering' program. She taught in the NASA “Journey through the Universe” outreach program in public schools and in 2004 was selected to be a member of the NASA Network of Educator Astronaut Teachers. In 2008, she was awarded a Fulbright Scholarship, working at the VTT Research facility in Espoo, Finland.  She has served as a consultant for many enterprises, including Kodak Inc., the US Department of Defense and the American University of Kuwait.

Professor Gibson has been an active volunteer for OSA, serving on the Tellers Committee, the Lomb Medal and Newport Research Awards Committees, and as Chair of the Optical Materials and Thin Films Program and IT Committees.  In 2002-2005 she was on the Board of Directors, and from 2011-2014 she served on the International Commission on Optics as the representative from OSA.  Other professional activities include service on the Executive Committee of the Vacuum Society of America (Thin Films Division), as an organizer for Materials Society Symposia and on the Editorial Boards for journals such as the Journal of Vacuum Science and Technology, NanoEthics, and Materials Characterization.

Her research on optical materials has been wide ranging, including polymers, protein crystals and semiconductors, with an emphasis on limited dimension structures such as thin films and waveguides.  She holds three patents and has authored 7 book contributions and over 100 refereed journal articles with 2300 citations.  Prof. Gibson’s present research is focused on semiconductor-core optical fibers and MBE-grown films for mid-infrared applications.

Ursula Gibson Statement

The Optical Society, in partnership with the OSA Foundation, provides support to the optical community at every level, from student outreach to local chapters, international conferences and advocacy for science and technology initiatives.

The organization welcomed me during the early stages of my career, connected me with professionals from around the world, and opened my eyes to the diversity of topics under its umbrella. Much has changed in the intervening years, engendering new challenges and opportunities.

Digital information storage and transmission, enabled by optical technologies, has altered the worlds of education, communication and publication —pillars upon which our society is built.  OSA established one of the first all-digital journals, and due to careful stewardship and high standards, Optics Express maintains a prestigious place in a rapidly expanding world of online publications.  Looking forward, there are new opportunities for OSA to show its leadership:

  • Education.  In addition to supporting hands-on learning through optics experimental kits, OSA is well-placed to host online content for teachers and faculty interested in using class time for activities other than lecturing.  In conjunction with the Foundation, OSA can coordinate the assembly of an optics curriculum at all levels – online materials, freely available over the internet, to let both independent learners and those in activity-based classrooms watch, listen and learn about optics.
  • Digital meetings.  Significant advances in bandwidth, software and internet availability suggest that the traditional conference format may yield to a hybrid or fully digital model in the near future. OSA has the opportunity to test out some of these new paradigms with smaller conferences, and explore the possibility of having parallel regional physical sites for larger ones. There are many challenges, but the opportunity to include greater participation among those unable to travel makes these challenges worth overcoming.

While digital technology, including ubiquitous Twitter, Facebook and other online feeds, can assist personal interactions that play an important role in science, it cannot supplant them.  OSA, through workshops and topical conferences, will continue to form a nexus for these activities.  At larger conferences, connections across different areas of optics can be supported — for example:

  • Networking. Particularly for those early in their careers, finding collaborators with complementary rather than parallel skill sets can be challenging.  OSA has the reach to bring together diverse groups, in workshops based on overarching scientific or technological goals, to nurture these sorts of interactions.
  • Mentoring.  OSA can continue and expand its role in connecting members with different kinds and amounts of experience, both at physical and digital assemblies.

These are a few ideas that may prove useful going forward, and there are many more that the membership will bring to the Board.  I look forward to great progress in the coming years.

Susana Marcos

Susana MarcosSusana Marcos Profile
Instituto de Optica, Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Cientificas, Spain

Susana Marcos received her M.S. (1992) and Ph.D. (1996) degrees in physics from the University of Salamanca, Spain. She carried out her pre-doctoral research at the Instituto de Optica, Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Cientificas (IO-CSIC), Madrid, Spain, in the field of physiological optics, working on novel retinal imaging techniques in vivo. She was a Postdoctoral Research Fellow (1997-2000) at Stephen A. Burns' lab at the Schepens Eye Research Institute, Harvard University under Fulbright and Human Frontier Science Postdoctoral Fellowships. She has been a visiting professor in universities in USA and Australia.

Prof. Marcos was the Director of IO-CSIC (2008-2012). She is currently a Professor of Research, at IO-CSIC and the Director of the Visual Optics and Biophotonics Lab, where she oversees more than 20 members from 6 different nationalities and multidisciplinary backgrounds.  In the last 12 years, 15 Ph.D. students have graduated under her supervision. Prof. Marcos is also a frequent lecturer in educational programs, leads several EU funded programs (including European Research Council Advanced Grant, Proof-of-Concept Grants) and has participated in numerous consortia in Europe, USA and India. She followed Research Leadership and Women Leadership programs at Harvard University, and Aliter International Business School.

Susana Marcos has pioneered research in novel imaging techniques to assess the optical properties of the ocular optics and the human retina, including Ocular Speckle Interferometry, Wavefront Sensing, Adaptive Optics, Quantitative Anterior Segment Optical Coherence Tomography, with applications in evaluation and developments of optical and surgical visual corrections. She has published more than 150 peer-reviewed publications (h-index=49; >7800 citations; Google Scholar), and has delivered over 250 lectures worldwide. She is an inventor in 17 families of patents, 10 licensed to industry, and is a co-founder of 2EyesVision (Madrid, Spain) and partner in Plenoptika (Boston, MA).

Her work has been recognized with numerous prestigious awards, including the Adolph Lomb Medal by The Optical Society, the European Young Investigator Award, by EURHORCs-European Science Foundation, the ICO Prize  by the International Commission for Optics, and Honoris Causa Doctorship by the Ukraine Academy of Science and Technology; Physics, Innovation and Technology Award from the Spanish Royal Society of Physics-Fundacion BBVA, and the Alcon Research Institute Award. She is also elected Fellow of the European Optical Society, of The Optical Society, and of the Association of Research in Vision and Ophthalmology. 

Susana Marcos has served in numerous roles at OSA, as Chair of the Applications of Visual Science Technical Group, supervisor of the IOSA Student Chapter, OSA Vision Meeting Committee, Frontiers in Optics Subcommittee, OSA Awards and Fellows Committees, Editorial Board Member in Biomedical Optics Express and in Optica, and OSA Director-at-Large (2013-2015). In other societies, she has been a President of the Visual Sciences Committee at the Spanish Optical Society, Program Chair at the Association of Research in Vision and Ophthalmology, Topical Editor in Vision Research and a Faculty Member at the MIT M+Vision Program. She has been member of the organizing committee for numerous international meetings and served on panels for funding agencies and organizations around the world.

Susana Marcos Statement

I consider The Optical Society as my professional home — a successful organization of which I feel proud of being a Fellow member and for which I am happy to volunteer. In fact, a key to OSA’s success is the willingness of members at all levels to participate and serve the society, and to feel part of an extraordinary motor of a continuously expanding field such as optics and photonics. For these reasons, I am honored to stand as a candidate for Vice President, after serving OSA as a Director at Large and in various other roles.

OSA has an excellent track record of being the reference society of optics worldwide, through its highly reputed peer-reviewed journals, technical conferences and prestigious awards. Through the sustained impact of its long-standing publications, such as the Journal of the Optical Society of America — soon to turn 100 years old — and the tremendous success of open-access journals such as Optics Express, Biomedical Optics Express or Optical Materials Express. OSA should continue to uphold its high ethical standard in publications, one of the gems of the society.

OSA should also play a role in public outreach, and create an impact in society and politics concerning the value of the science and technology of optics and photonics in the economic growth and well-being of people. Outstanding OSA programs in that regard include the OSA Congressional Fellowships, Ambassador Programs, awareness articles in Optics and Photonics News, and the National Photonics Initiative.  The involvement of industry and of social and political agents is crucial in achieving those goals, and OSA can certainly serve as an extraordinary vehicle to promote translation and entrepreneurship in the optics and photonics field.

As a supervisor of a Student Chapter at my own institute, and through various interactions with Student Chapters worldwide, I am thrilled by the enthusiasm, extraordinary sense of belonging to the society, and capacity for organization and dissemination of the OSA student members. These activities amplify the enormous commitment of OSA to education and to spreading science among the youngest. The OSA Foundation’s educational kits, Girl Scout programs, and other efforts are fantastic tools for motivation at a young age — and very possibly triggers for future careers in optics.

Finally, OSA has truly become an international society. As the fraction of international OSA members outside the USA increases, it is necessary to effectively increase connections with other national and supra-national optical societies worldwide. As a European member of the Society, with a large network of academic collaborators and colleagues in the United States, Latin-America, Australia and Asia, and as the head of a largely multicultural laboratory, I strongly believe that the international exchanges can only help to build up a stronger community and create a larger impact for our scientific findings and technological advances. I envision OSA as an international and multidisciplinary, inclusive society, supportive of minorities, women, young scientists, experienced researchers, and entrepreneurs — building on the solid ground of over a century of leadership in optics, with a shining future ahead.


Mark Brongersma

Mark BrongersmaMark Brongersma Profile
Stanford University, USA

Mark Brongersma is a Professor in the Departments of Materials Science and Engineering and Applied Physics (by courtesy) at Stanford University. He leads a research team of ten students and four postdocs. Their research is directed towards the development and physical analysis of new materials and structures that find use in nanoscale electronic and photonic devices. He studied physics at Eindhoven University of Technology in the Netherlands. He received his Ph.D. from the FOM Institute in Amsterdam in 1998. There he investigated the optical properties of light-emitting silicon nanostructures. From 1998-2001, he was a postdoctoral research fellow at the California Institute of Technology. During this time, he worked on light manipulation with metallic nanostructures below the free space diffraction limit. There, he coined the term “plasmonics” for a new device technology that exploits the unique optical properties of nanoscale metallic structures to route and manipulate light at the nanoscale. He has authored\co-authored over 175 publications, including papers in Science, Nature Photonics, Nature Materials, and Nature Nanotechnology. He also holds a number of patents in the area of Si microphotonics and plasmonics. He is a co-founder of Rolith, a company that has developed a range of products that require large-area, low-cost, high-throughput nanostructuring. Brongersma was the Chair of the Gordon Conference on Plasmonics in 2014. He received a National Science Foundation Career Award, the Walter J. Gores Award for Excellence in Teaching, the International Raymond and Beverly Sackler Prize in the Physical Sciences (Physics) for his work on plasmonics, and is a Fellow of The Optical Society, SPIE, and the American Physical Society.

Mark Brongersma Statement

Congratulations! This year, OSA is celebrating its 100th anniversary. Over the last century we have witnessed incredible advances in optics and photonics. The results of these impressive scientific advances can be seen all around us and new areas for discovery keep opening up. The society itself has also evolved to become the premier professional organization that brings together scientists, engineers, and entrepreneurs of all ages and all places around the globe to openly discuss current advances and future challenges for the field. 

At Stanford, we have a very active and broad photonics and optics effort and I have very much enjoyed seeing the many positive impacts of OSA on virtually every aspect of these programs. We have a very active OSA Student Chapter, and it is exciting to listen to the many new ideas for the future coming from the next generation of talent. I definitely would like to be an extra voice for them.

I am active in the fields of nanophotonics and plasmonics, relatively new branches of our field. I also cofounded a company that aims at large-area nanopatterning of optical nanostructures. As a result, I have witnessed firsthand the effectiveness and influence of OSA on an increasingly diverse community. I am eager to help OSA identify and reach out to budding areas of science and technology, to further grow and strengthen our vibrant community.
The entrepreneurial atmosphere at Stanford allows an insight into the initial spark of ideas which leads to many start-up companies.  This, along with being centered in the heart of Silicon Valley  — one of the world’s premier start-up locations — puts me in a unique and valuable position to identify these opportunities.  Links between these prospects and OSA can be  developed even further, in part, by fortifying the support of the local sections and Student Chapters.

I have personally gained much from the being part of OSA and an active member of the photonics community. The broad scope of activities offered by OSA has allowed me to meet many of my friends and collaborators. I am eager to work with the members of  OSA to think about new ways to broaden these opportunities for interaction and learning for everyone interested in the fascinating world of light.

Tim Carrig

Tim CarrigTim Carrig Profile
Lockheed Martin, USA

Tim Carrig is Director of Technology Development for the Lockheed Martin (LM) Advanced Technology Center.  He is responsible for the execution of a diverse set of applied research programs and the management of a ~335 person team spread amongst six major sites.  The Technology Development directorate is composed of groups focused on optics and electro-optics; RF and photonics; laser radar; phenomenology and sensors; advanced materials; and information, thermal and energy sciences.  In the optics area, the group has expertise in imaging optics, passive and active sensors, photonic devices, and solid-state lasers.  The Technology Development organization develops innovative solutions for a variety of customers, and has research partnerships with several universities and small companies. 

Prior to joining LM, Dr. Carrig was Director of Research & Development at Coherent Technologies, Inc. (CTI), a small business that merged with LM in 2005.  Dr. Carrig joined CTI in 1995 as a research scientist after completing a postdoctoral tour at the Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL).  At LANL, he conducted research in the areas of THz radiation physics and solid-state laser development.  In 1992 Dr. Carrig served as an instructor for the School of Electrical Engineering at Cornell University, where he taught a senior/graduate level laser physics course.  Dr. Carrig graduated from Cornell in 1992 with a Ph.D. in applied physics and a minor in quantum electronics.  As a graduate student, Dr. Carrig held an Office of Naval Research Graduate Fellowship in Laser Physics and was a co-recipient of the Johnson School of Management’s Hemmeter Prize in entrepreneurship.  While in school, Dr. Carrig gained research experience working as a student at several government laboratories including the Naval Research Laboratory, the National Center for Atmospheric Research, and the Rome Air Development Center (now the Air Force Research Laboratory).  Dr. Carrig has designed and built laser sources in the ultraviolet, visible, and infrared spectral regions; given 16 invited talks in eight countries; has five patents; and over 70 refereed publications and presentations.  Dr. Carrig has been an OSA Fellow since 2010 and has been a registered Patent Agent since 1999.

Dr. Carrig has been privileged to serve as an OSA volunteer for a number of years including six as a Topical Editor for Optics Letters.  He has also served as Chair of the OSA Fellows Committee, as Chair of the Charles Hard Townes Award Committee, and as Chair of the CLEO Joint Committee on Applications.  Additionally, Dr. Carrig has served on a number of conference program committees including as Chair of Advanced Solid-State Photonics and as CLEO Chair for both the Science & Innovations and Applications & Technology program elements.  He currently serves as CLEO Steering Committee Chair and as a member of the Application of Lasers for Sensing & Free Space Communication (LS&C) program committee.  Lastly, Dr. Carrig is a strong proponent of STEM activities and has supported elementary and secondary education in a number of ways including giving classroom optics presentations, judging science fairs, and serving two elected terms on a local public school board. 

Tim Carrig Statement

I have been a member of The Optical Society since 1987 when I first attended an OSA event – the annual meeting in Rochester, N.Y.  As a graduate student, I found that experience akin to visiting a toy store, and it motivated me to learn as much as I could about our field.  Since then, I have greatly benefited from being an OSA member in many obvious and typical ways, including attending and presenting at conferences, publishing in journals, and interacting with colleagues.  These positive experiences encouraged me to participate more deeply in OSA activities by becoming a volunteer.  In each instance I have found these engagements to be rewarding, and each opportunity has provided additional incentive to contribute.  However, in all cases, whether it be conference or journal related, it always boils down to the simple truth that people in our field do amazing and interesting things and are willing to share their knowledge.  I’ve never left an OSA meeting without a new list of ideas to pursue!

I’m excited and honored to be considered for a position on the OSA Board of Directors.  During my career, I have had the good fortune to work at a university, in government laboratories, and for both small and large businesses.  I believe these experiences enable me to see our field from several perspectives and will help me to represent the greater membership.  I have also had the privilege to participate in conference planning, to review and edit journal submissions, to serve on several OSA committees, and to contribute as both a meeting and student award sponsor.  These activities have educated me regarding how OSA operates and will help me to more effectively serve on the Board.

Our 100th anniversary provides a great opportunity to review what the society has accomplished and to set strategic priorities for the next century.  Change is ubiquitous and the society will need to continually evolve to keep pace with new information-sharing technologies.  This is critical if OSA is to remain the world’s go-to source for optics and photonics knowledge, and to serve its membership’s career and professional needs.

I believe the Board must ensure that OSA maintains the field’s most relevant meetings and journals.  Historically, these have always been strong academically and on the forefront of science and technology.  Going forward, we must ensure that these offerings are also relevant to business and industry as breakthroughs and innovations must often struggle across a funding chasm before becoming solutions and products.

OSA must foster a welcoming and inviting presence in an increasingly diverse optics community.  This includes making our journals and meetings accessible and affordable to those across the globe, supporting student and local chapters, supporting career events for our members, and actively collaborating with other groups such as the IEEE Photonics Society and APS.

Lastly, OSA must continue to play a leading role in encouraging and fostering STEM education.   These activities need to continue to be focused not just on students, but also on civic and national political leaders.

Pierre Chavel

Pierre ChavelPierre Chavel Profile
Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique and Institut d’Optique – Graduate School, France

Pierre Chavel graduated from the Universite Paris-Sud, Orsay, with a docteur es sciences in physics in 1979. Since 1972, he has been a research scientist at CNRS (Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique), working at the Institut d'Optique – Graduate School. His research interests include subwavelength diffractive optics, digital image processing, optical coherence, speckle and optoelectronic computing. His publications include some 120 articles in refereed journals and 12 patents and he edited or co-edited several books. He has taught courses on physical optics, coherence, geometrical optics, optics in computing, speckle, Fourier analysis and Fourier optics at IOGS and other institutions. As a participant or PI, he has been involved for many years in research projects funded by the European Union “Framework Programme” for Science and Technology. From 2004 through 2009, he chaired the board of shareholders of one high tech startup company in the field of biophotonics. He served as the Director of Laboratoire Charles Fabry (1998-2009, 2013-2014) and is serving as a deputy director for the Saint-Etienne site of Institut d’Optique, also working there with Laboratoire Hubert Curien. He was a visiting scientist at the Image Processing Institute, University of Southern California, Los Angeles during 1979-1980, and a Xiing Sheng Chern Visiting Professor at the Institute of Modern Optics, Nankai University, Tianjin, China (2007-2010). A Fellow of OSA, SPIE (International Society of Optics and Photonics), and the European Optical Society, he served on the board of SFO, the French Optical Society (1983-89 and 91-95) and as the Secretary of the International Commission for Optics, 1990-2002 and as a chair of a number of scientific conferences, including CLEO Europe 2000 (one of the two program chairs) and CLEO Europe 2003 (one of the two general chairs). He is also the President of the French Physics Olympiads (2011-present).

Pierre Chavel Statement

I am confident that our learned societies are the best institutions to support and promote our scientific and technical community. OSA has been remarkably successful in establishing highly reputable journals and other publications, as well as scientific events catering to the community with reliable information and networking opportunities. Its scope adequately covers the diversity of optics and photonics, and its geographical coverage encompasses all continents. Student Chapters and other initiatives to effectively involve young scientists in the life of our society have been successful.

I am willing to serve on the Board and contribute to addressing current challenges and opportunities facing the scientific and organizational aspects of our society. Those include for example, on the scientific side, the role of optics in emerging quantum technologies, nanophotonics, biophotonics, and engineering aspects of optical information (new fabrication technologies, a closer link between image acquisition and the associated signal processing functions). On the organizational side, the challenges and opportunities encompass collaboration among learned societies worldwide, the support of optics for peace and development, and a better control of the flow of high-quality information in scientific publications, in a context where access to scientific information is changing fast.

Carlos Henrique de Brito Cruz

Carlos Henrique de Brito CruzCarlos Henrique de Brito Cruz Profile
University of Campinas, Brazil

Carlos Henrique de Brito Cruz was born in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil (1956). He has a degree in electrical engineering (Inst. Tecn. de Aeronáutica, ITA), and a MSc degree and a DSc degree in physics (1980 and 1983, Physics Inst., Univ. of Campinas, Unicamp). He was a researcher at the Quantum Optics Laboratory at the University of Rome and a visiting researcher at the Universitè Pierre et Marie Curie, Paris, France. He worked as a resident visitor at AT&T Bell Laboratories in Holmdel, N.J. (1986-7) and was a visitor at Bell Labs, Murray Hill, N.J.. Since 1982, he has been a professor at the Physics Institute at Unicamp.

Brito Cruz has been the Director of the Physics Institute at Unicamp for two terms. He has been the Dean of Research at Unicamp and the President of the São Paulo Research Foundation, FAPESP. He has been the Rector of Unicamp.

His research interests are in the field of ultrafast phenomena. In his laboratory at Unicamp in Brazil, he and colleagues use femtosecond pulse lasers to study fast processes in condensed matter. Presently his research interests are directed towards the study of ultrafast processes in graphene. He contributed to the understanding of dispersion effects and control in short laser pulses, the generation of femtosecond laser pulses, hole-burning spectroscopy in dyes, ultrafast relaxations and the AC Stark effect in quantum dots, and other problems in ultrafast spectroscopy.

Brito Cruz was one of the 12 members in the special committee formed by the Inter Academy Council, at the request of the U.N. Secretary General, to review the IPCC procedures (2010). He presided over the Council for Technology and Competitiveness at the Federation of Industries of the State of São Paulo (FIESP) and has been a member of the Telefónica I+D Advisory Board, and the Microsoft Research External Research Advisory Board.

Since 2005, he has been the Science Director at the São Paulo Research Foundation (FAPESP). His job is to oversee the analysis, evaluation, and determination of funding for each of the 25,000 research proposals received yearly in all fields (Physical Sciences, Life Sciences, Engineering, Humanities, Social Sciences) by the Foundation. The Foundation, funded by the taxpayers in the State of São Paulo, funds research in all fields including research programs in Biodiversity, Bioenergy, Global Climate Change, and e-Science. FAPESP’s international cooperation program covers a broad range of countries and agencies including the UK Research Councils, the Agence Nationale de Recherche (ANR, France), the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG, Germany), now (Netherlands), and NSF, DoE, and NIH in the United States.

Brito Cruz is a member of the Brazilian Academy of Sciences, a Fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry and a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. He received the Conrado Wessel General Science Prize for his scientific career. He received the Ordre des Palmes Academiques de France, the Order of the Scientific Merit from the Federative Republic of Brazil, and the Order of the British Empire, Honorary (OBE).

Carlos Henrique de Brito Cruz Statement

I joined OSA in 1980, while a graduate student, because I wanted to receive Optics Letters regularly and faster than it was received by the university library in Brazil.  Since then the society has been contributing to my scientific career through its publications, meetings, and conferences. In 1996 I contributed to the society as a member of the then-interim International Advisory Committee, under Tingye Li.

This year we commemorate OSA’s 100th anniversary. The Society has been an essential point of reference for thousands of scientists worldwide. Its publications and events stimulate and facilitate the communication and discussion of frontier scientific results. More recently OSA adopted effective strategies to inspire younger generations of scientists. To the benefit of all members the Society has implemented a series of actions to expand its global reach, so much so that since 2008 the Society has been known as OSA - The Optical Society.

Drawing from my professional experience in research as well as in developing and implementing research policy, I am eager to contribute to the society in the following themes:

  • Global reach. Science, technology, and education, which are the purposes of OSA, are activities that increasingly depend on international interactions and collaborations. Global reach is fundamental to all these objectives, and the society has been working hard to this end, with remarkable results. There are more than 300 Student Chapters and several local sections in several countries. OSA journals publish an increasing number of articles from authors outside the United States and the participation in OSA- organized conferences and meetings is more international each year. Connecting Student Chapters through communication, exchange, and joint meetings is an instrument we should explore to create lifelong research connections that will foster the careers of the younger members and help us build a closely knitted global Society.
  • Publications. The environment for the publication of scientific journals in the world today is rapidly changing, and this brings challenges and opportunities for OSA. Open access is gaining momentum as governments and/or funding agencies establish mandates and as the total cost of subscriptions for university and research-institution libraries tends to increase. As a professional society, OSA has to its advantage the capability of mobilizing its members as reviewers, while maintaining high academic standards and fast turnaround time for manuscripts.
  • Meetings. OSA organizes terrific scientific meetings that are of great value to the membership and to the research community at large. OSA’s initiative to organize meetings outside of the United States has been very well received by international members. This initiative can be further enhanced by working in collaboration with local associations and funders, both in reaching out to a broader local community and in sharing the costs.

Martijn de Sterke

Martijn de SterkeMartijn de Sterke Profile
University of Sydney, Australia

Martijn de Sterke was bitten by the optics bug during a third-year undergraduate laboratory experiment at the University of Delft in the Netherlands, studying the aberrations of microscope objectives. He received B. Eng. and M. Eng. degrees from Delft, and his Ph.D. in optics from the University of Rochester (1987). After postdoctoral work at the University of Toronto, he took up a faculty position at the University of Sydney in 1991, where he has been a Professor in Physics since 2003. He was Associate Dean for Research at Sydney from 2004-2006. He received the Pawsey Medal from the Australian Academy of Sciences in 1999, and was awarded an OSA Fellowship in 2003.

Martijn de Sterke has been associated with OSA since 1987, when, as a graduate student, he presented at the annual meeting held in Rochester, N.Y. More recently (2001-2006), he has been Associate Editor of Optics Express, and he was its Editor-in-Chief during 2007-2012, a time during which the yearly submissions to the journal nearly doubled to over 6,000. He was the first from outside North America to be appointed to be Editor-in-Chief of an OSA journal. Since 2014 he has been Chair of OSA’s Board of Editors. He has been active in conference organization, most notably as a Program Chair of the 2011 CLEO Pacific Rim conference meeting held in Sydney, and also of the QELS conference when it was held in Munich in 2013. He has been an OSA Traveling lecturer for many years, most recently visiting India in 2015 and again earlier this year. From 2006-2007, he was a Council member of the Australian Optical Society (AOS).

Martijn de Sterke is a theorist who has published more than 300 refereed journal papers and book chapters in areas as varied as nonlinear optics, guided-wave optics, wave propagation in random media, periodic media (including fiber gratings and photonic crystals), solar energy, plasmonics and metamaterials. Highlights include theory and the first experimental observation of gap solitons, the development of the Multipole Method for the calculation of the modes of microstructured optical fibers, and the theory and observation of Bloch oscillations in curved waveguide arrays. He was a founding Chief Investigator of the CUDOS research center (seven universities, over 100 researchers) which has received continuous funding from the Australian Government since 2003. He has supervised or co-supervised 22 Ph.D. students to completion.

Martijn de Sterke Statement

The activities for which OSA is best known are its publications and conferences, which are the gold standard in optics and photonics, and it is crucial for OSA and for the health of our field generally that this remain so. Through these and other activities, I consider OSA to be the de facto global organization for the advocacy and promotion of research in optics and photonics. OSA has made tremendous progress in becoming an inclusive, international organization —  witness the fact that both 2017 candidates for Vice President and three out of five candidates for Director at Large do not reside in the United States. Nonetheless, with almost half of the papers published in OSA journals now coming from Asia and the Pacific Rim, this is not the time to be complacent on this. As such, if elected to the Board of Directors, my priorities would be:

  • Publications. OSA’s publications are being threatened from multiple sides. High-impact journals of other publishers aim to skim off the research with the highest perceived impact, while many new journals, mostly open access, are starting up. In this environment, the average quality of submissions is decreasing, and many reviewers are overworked. To maintain quality, OSA already prescreens submissions before they go to referees. These procedures need to be strengthened and augmented and to be made uniform across the different journals to ensure that OSA remains the premier publisher of high-quality papers in our area. 
  • Conferences. OSA’s conferences are strong, and are diverse in size, topic area and location. Nonetheless, the difficulty experienced by many researchers, including students, to attend and present at conferences is an impediment to improving the quality of their research and, hence, the quality of journal submissions. OSA can take a leading role in making it easier to organize conferences away from traditional locations. Such conferences may also have somewhat relaxed English language requirements. The IONS/KOALA meetings are an excellent vehicle for this — students can present their work in a relatively unthreatening environment, become familiar with local optics and photonics activities, and meet leading national and international researchers.
  • Advocacy. Many countries do not have enough optics researchers to mount a credible representation — especially countries or regions which are small or limited in resources. OSA, possibly alongside the OSA Foundation, can help represent local optics communities in these countries or regions and help devise campaigns for resources. An example of this is the very successful European initiative in which students receive instruction at several different universities. Universities elsewhere with small programs in optics and photonics may benefit from such cooperative approaches.
  • Diversity. OSA needs to strive for even more diversity in the volunteers on its committees, including conference committees and journal editors, for example by strengthening its Young Professionals initiative.