The Optical Society Congratulates Ed White on Selection as Chair of the NPI

4 August 2017

The Optical Society Congratulates Ed White on Selection
as Chair of the National Photonics  Initiative

WASHINGTON, – The Optical Society (OSA) commends the selection of Edward White, associate vice president of test, assembly and packaging and corporate outreach for AIM Photonics, as the next  National Photonics Initiative (NPI) Steering Committee Chair. White will succeed Alan Willner, the Steven and Kathryn Sample Chair in Engineering University of Southern California and 2016 president of OSA. The National Photonics Initiative is an alliance of top scientific societies uniting industry and academia to raise awareness of photonics, and its impact on society.
Editorial Note: Direct from the NPI.
“It is an honor to serve as chair of an organization that for the past several years has successfully united our community to advance optics and photonics in the United States,” said White. “I extend my deepest thanks to Alan Willner for his years of leadership and friendship. We are enormously grateful for his dedication and passion for our industry, and applaud his many accomplishments as chair of the NPI.”
Serving as a Corporate Outreach Executive for AIM Photonics, White has helped identify companies that would participate in and benefit from improvements in the manufacturing of photonic integrated circuits; educate the community about the merits of photonic integrated devices; and increased membership in AIM Photonics. White is also the associate vice president of AIM Photonics’ Test, Assembly and Packaging business located in Rochester where he is responsible for launching the new AIM Photonics facility and ongoing business operations.
“As a longtime leading voice within the optics and photonics community, Ed brings a wealth of wisdom and private­sector expertise to the NPI. I know that there are truly great things to come under his leadership,” said Willner. “As a community, we have made wonderful progress, and I am quite otimistic that optics and photonics will continue to flourish for the betterment of society. It has been a great privilege to be part of this unique collaboration, and I look forward to assisting Ed and continuing the work as a member of the NPI Steering Committee.”
During his term (August 2015­July 2017) as chair, Willner worked to identify key optics and photonics technologies that could benefit different areas of critical importance to the US, including future high performance computing and quantum information systems. He also oversaw efforts to establish a task force to develop a white paper and cancer technology road map to accelerate progress in cancer diagnosis. Among the highlights of Willner’s term includes the passage of the American Innovation and Competitiveness Act, which was signed into law by President Obama; successful support of the 21st Century Cures Act, also signed into law by President Obama; and securing optics and photonics internships language in the Senate­introduced Carl D. Perkins Career and Technical Education Act (CTE) in September 2016.
About the NPI:
The National Photonics Initiative (NPI) is a collaborative alliance among industry, academia and government to raise awareness of photonics and the impact of photonics on our everyday lives; increase cooperation and coordination among US industry, government and academia to advance photonics­driven fields; and drive US funding and investment in areas of photonics critical to maintaining US economic competitiveness and national security. The initiative is being led by top scientific societies including the American Physical Society (APS), the IEEE Photonics Society, the Laser Institute of America (LIA), The Optical Society (OSA) and SPIE, the International Society for Optics and Photonics. For more information visit
About The Optical Society
Founded in 1916, The Optical Society (OSA) is the leading professional organization for scientists, engineers, students and business leaders who fuel discoveries, shape real-life applications and accelerate achievements in the science of light. Through world-renowned publications, meetings and membership initiatives, OSA provides quality research, inspired interactions and dedicated resources for its extensive global network of optics and photonics experts. For more information, visit
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