The Optical Society Elects Ian Walmsley as 2016 Vice President

20 October 2015

The Optical Society Elects Ian Walmsley as 2016 Vice President

Walmsley to serve as OSA president in 2018; three directors-at-large elected to OSA Board of Directors

San Jose, California —The Optical Society (OSA) is pleased to announce that its members have elected Ian Walmsley of Oxford University, UK, as its 2016 vice president. Three directors-at-large were also chosen during this year's election: Michal Lipson of Columbia University, USA, Franz Kärtner of the Center for Free-Electron Laser Science and the University of Hamburg, Germany and Turan Erdogan of Melles Griot and IDEX Optics and Photonics, USA. 

By accepting the vice presidency, Walmsley makes a four-year commitment to OSA's Board of Directors. He will serve one year as vice president, followed by one year as president-elect, president in 2018 and past-president in 2019.

“Ian is a recognized leader in the field of optics,” said Elizabeth Rogan, CEO of The Optical Society. “He understands the critical value that a professional society like OSA gives to both current and future generation of innovators.”

Walmsley is an OSA Fellow and has been an active volunteer with The Optical Society for over two decades, holding a variety of key leadership positions. In addition to being a Director-at-Large for the OSA Board of Directors, Walmsley served as the Chair of the Publications Long-Term Planning Committee, the Member and Education Services Committee and the Quantum Electronics Division and the Ultrafast Technical Group. He’s been a member of the Public Policy Committee and currently serves on OSA’s Strategic Planning Committee. Recently, he chaired the committee that established Optica in 2014, OSA’s new flagship journal. He has chaired global conferences, including several OSA topical meetings, QELS and the OSA Annual Meeting, as well as co-chairing the ILS-XV meeting.

“The Optical Society has provided me with a professional home for more than two decades, from my earliest years as a graduate student to the present,” said Walmsley. “I hope to contribute to OSA’s continuing impact on the field and profession through its role as the go-to place for optics for students, researchers, professional scientists and engineers, industrialists, entrepreneurs and policy-makers.”

Walmsley is the Hooke Professor of Experimental Physics at the University of Oxford, in the United Kingdom, where he is also Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Research and Innovation. He leads a research group in the areas of quantum and ultrafast optics, and is the Director of the Networked Quantum Information Technologies Hub of the UK National Quantum Technologies Programme. His research efforts have been directed toward quantum phenomena on ultrafast timescales, including the generation of non-classical radiation and its application in quantum technologies, including sensing, communications and simulation, manipulation of matter using closed loop methods, and the development of methods for the measurement of ultrafast optical waveforms. He has published more than 240 research articles and review papers and been granted 5 patents. In 1999, he received the Goergen Award for Undergraduate Teaching at the University of Rochester, as well as the Rochester Undergraduate Optical Society Teaching Award in 1996, and the School of Engineering and Applied Science Teaching Award in 1995.

Along with Walmsley, the new directors at large, Lipson, Kärtner and Erdogan, will begin their terms on January 1, 2016. They will hold their positions for three years.

Lipson is a professor of electrical engineering at Columbia University in New York. She was elected as an OSA Fellow in 2008 for her outstanding contributions to the field of silicon nanophotonics, including the development of high-bandwidth modulators and low-power nonlinear optical devices and was named by Thomson Reuters as a top 1 percent highly cited researcher in the field of physics.

Kärtner heads the Ultrafast Optics and X-rays Division at the Center for Free-Electron Laser Science at DESY, Hamburg, and is Professor of Physics at University of Hamburg and Adjunct Professor of Electrical Engineering at Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He served as the OSA representative on the Conference on Lasers and Electro-Optics (CLEO) Steering Committee as well as the Program Committee of CLEO US and CLEO Europe. Kärtner was elected as an OSA Fellow 2008 for his pioneering contributions to femtosecond pulse generation and ultrafast nonlinear optics.

Erdogan is currently the Site Leader of Melles Griot in Rochester, NY. Within OSA, he has served as Program and General Chair of major OSA conferences, including the Optical Fiber Communications Conference and the Bragg Gratings, Photosensitivity, and Poling in Glass Waveguides Topical Meeting. He has also served on a number of other conference organizing committees and has been active in the Rochester Section of the OSA. He was elected as an OSA Fellow in 1999 for advancing the understanding of the properties of periodic structures in optical fibers and semiconductor lasers. He was awarded the Adolph Lomb Medal in 1995.

"We welcome Michal, Franz and Turan to the Board," said Rogan. "Their vast set of skills and experiences will add tremendous value to the Board’s directives in developing future programs and services that meet the needs of the community.”

About The Optical Society
Founded in 1916, The Optical Society (OSA) is the leading professional organization for scientists, engineers, students and entrepreneurs 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. OSA is a founding partner of the National Photonics Initiative and the 2015 International Year of Light. For more information, visit:

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