Dear Members of the WGABS,
I have decided to run for a place on the Division Steering Committee of IAU Division G (Stars and Stellar Physics) in order to promote the research currently being carried through by the Active B Star community. I am asking for your vote in the election that began today. If you are a member of Division G you should already have received a link to vote from Ignasi Ribas and Corinne Charbonnel, President and Vice President of Division G. If elected my first and highest priority will be to secure Commission status for the WGABS. We are in a strong position to achieve this goal since we have continuously been in existence for a long time (since 1979) and currently have over 135 IAU members. I include my candidate statement below. Thank you for your support.
The reorganization of the IAU provides us with an excellent opportunity to showcase the impressive observational and theoretical research that is currently being done in the field of stellar astrophysics. I’m running for the DSC of Division G to help with such an effort. My research specializations include studies of the photospheres and circumstellar environments of B stars and B-type interacting binaries. Currently I’m investigating the behavior and physical properties of hot accretion spots in interacting binaries, searching for O subdwarf companions to bright Be stars, and determining elemental abundances in the photospheres of Be and non-emission B stars.
My longest IAU service has been with the Working Group on Active B Stars (WGABS). I served on the OC from 1985-91, 1991- 2006 (non-voting), 2006-12 (Co-Chair, Chair). Since 1987 I have been the Editor-in-Chief of the Be Star Newsletter for the WGABS. I organized the scientific programs for the WGABS business meetings at the IAU GAs in Sydney, Prague, and Rio de Janeiro and recently served on the SOCs for IAUS-240, IAUS-272 (co-editor of the proceedings), and IAUS-282, and on the US National Committee. I feel that there is room for additional Commissions in Division G and several of the current long-standing Working Groups are excellent candidates.
The DSC should initiate programs and policies that encourage young astronomers to participate in IAU Symposia and General Assemblies. IAU Symposia are enhanced if the theme is such that it can attract astronomers from several Commissions and Divisions such as the highly successful IAUS-282 that brought together the binary star and exoplanet communities. To keep a large Division such as ours informed about the science highlights from all of its diverse Commissions, it might be worthwhile to explore establishing a Division G Newsletter. Let’s take advantage of the new IAU Division structure to foster a new level of visibility in stellar astrophysics!