On Monday, March 18 at 7:00 p.m. for a special members-only lecture in the Frost Planetarium as we welcome two distinguished Smithsonian scholars for an intimate conservation. Dr. Charles Alcock, Director of the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, will be joined by Frost Science Board Trustee Dr. Richard Kurin, Smithsonian Distinguished Scholar and Ambassador-at-Large. These two scholars will have an intriguing open dialogue about their research and work, inspiring our local community to learn and discover.
Dr. Alcock primary research focus is on the determination of the composition of cosmic dark matter, innovative surveys of the outer solar system, massive compact halo objects, comets and asteroids. As a member of the Smithsonian’s senior leadership team, Dr. Kurin focuses on strategic direction, institutional partnerships, public representation, philanthropic support and special initiatives.
Dr. Alcock was educated at the University of Auckland, New Zealand and at the California Institute of Technology. He assumed his position as Director in 2004 and served as Acting Undersecretary for Science for the Smithsonian (2008-2009). Professor Alcock received the Department of Energy’s Ernest O. Lawrence Award for Physics in 1996 and the Beatrice M. Tinsley Award of the American Astronomical Society in 2000. He was elected to the National Academy of Sciences in 2001 and to the American Academy of Arts & Sciences in 2006.
Prior to his current role, Dr. Kurin served as Acting Provost and Under Secretary for Museums and Research from 2015, and from 2007, as Under Secretary for History, Art, and Culture. He served on the U.S. National Commission for UNESCO and helped draft an international treaty, now ratified by 170 nations, to safeguard living cultural heritage. Kurin serves as Smithsonian liaison to the U.S. President’s Committee for the Arts and the Humanities and the White House Historical Association, and is a member of the U.S. Department of State Cultural Heritage Coordinating Committee. An anthropologist with a doctorate from the University of Chicago, Kurin specialized in the study of South Asia, conducting years of fieldwork in India and Pakistan.
Doors open at 6:15 p.m. Lecture starts promptly at 7:00 p.m. Seating is first-come, first-served. Food and beverage will be available for purchase.