WFIRST is now the Nancy Grace Roman Space Telescope

Ken Sembach
2021 Zenodo  
It is nice to be able to hold a conference now for a telescope named after Nancy Grace Roman. For those of you who may not know who Nancy Grace Roman was, I wanted to give you a summary of some of her highlights of her career and accomplishments. She was an amazing, amazing woman. A very accomplished astronomer. Absolutely dedicated and consummate public servant. Someone who really persisted in the face of a lot of obstacles in her career path. She was the first woman on the astronomy faculty
more » ... the University of Chicago, but left the University eventually because she realized that she wasn't going to be promoted there. She went to work for NASA. She was the first chief of astronomy and the first woman to hold an executive position at NASA. She really was the person probably more than anyone who is responsible for shepherding NASA's great observatories right behind the original Orbiting Astronomical Observatories in the late '60s and '70s right through to Hubble. The field of astronomy today would not be the same had it not been for Nancy Grace's persistence or love of science or absolute commitment to making sure that others could explore the universe and love science the way that she did. Beyond that, she was just a tremendous woman who was a joy to talk to. Someone who was a real champion for women and children. She volunteered for reading for the blind and dyslexic. She was an active member of her church. When I gave a statement at her memorial service at her church, I was honored to do that. And I was astounded by the love that that congregation had for her and the interest they had in her life. And so they were extremely pleased to hear that NASA decided to rename WFIRST after Nancy Grace. I think she would've also been very proud to have had the telescope named after her. I think she would've thought it was a very fitting way to cap her tremendous career. It's up to all of us now to make sure that we help that observatory live up to the legacy of her name and what she has done for us. So let's make sure th [...]
doi:10.5281/zenodo.4432772 fatcat:obvseab6cvbkziiep6dtwlefoa