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Distinguished Ohio State scholar to be appointed to White House advisory council

Dorota Grejner-Brzezinska in her labThe White House has announced President Donald J. Trump’s intent to nominate College of Engineering Associate Dean for Research Dorota Grejner-Brzezinska to the President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology (PCAST).

Also a professor in the Department of Civil, Environmental and Geodetic Engineering, Grejner-Brzezinska is an expert on global positioning system/global navigation satellite systems (GPS/GNSS), multi-sensor integrated systems for assured navigation, and autonomous vehicle navigation. In October, she was the first woman from The Ohio State University to be inducted into the National Academy of Engineering. She is a Fellow of the Institute of Navigation (ION), the International Association of Geodesy and The Royal Institute of Navigation.

PCAST is a presidential-level advisory council of experts from the private sector and academic communities who will provide scientific and technical information to inform public policy relating to the American economy, the American worker, national and homeland security, and other concerns.

“As a scientist and academic educator, I am honored to join this distinguished body of accomplished science and technology leaders and to serve our nation in this way,” said Grejner-Brzezinska. “Academia, industry and government must work in partnership to support innovation, create frameworks for fast translation to application, and implement legislation that will promote a healthy, educated, sustainable and equitable world, and shape the future social and cultural fabric of our society.”

Beginning in 1933 with President Franklin D. Roosevelt's Science Advisory Board, each President has established an advisory committee of scientists, engineers and health professionals. Although the name of the advisory boards have varied over the years, the purpose of each remains the same—to provide scientific and technical advice to the President of the United States.

The current PCAST was originally established through Executive Order 13226 by President George W. Bush in 2001, and subsequently reestablished by President Barack Obama in 2010 and President Trump on October 22.

“The Trump Administration is ensuring a diverse group of our Nation’s leaders in science and technology is represented within PCAST,” said White House Office of Science and Technology Policy Director Kelvin K. Droegemeier, who also chairs the council. “As promised, we’re announcing additional voices from academia who will play a critical role in how PCAST advises the President on matters central to our Nation’s science and technology efforts.”

The council will include 16 total members in addition to the chair. The inaugural meeting will take place on November 18.

The White House also announced President Trump’s intent to nominate Shannon Blunt, professor of electrical engineering and computer science at the University of Kansas. PCAST members announced previously on October 22 include: Catherine Bessant, Bank of America; H. Fisk Johnson, S.C. Johnson & Son, Inc.; Dario Gil, IBM Research; Sharon Hrynkow, Cyclo Therapeutics; A.N. Sreeram, Dow Chemical; Shane Wall, HP Labs; and K. Birgitta Whaley, University of California, Berkley.

Grejner-Brzezinska came to Ohio State more than 20 years ago as a Fulbright Scholar from Poland to study geodetic science, which, among other things, focuses on the size and shape of the Earth and the estimation of spatial coordinates—two keys to creating reliable global positioning systems. She went on to earn a PhD and become a faculty member at the College of Engineering. She served as chair of the Department of Civil, Environmental and Geodetic Engineering for four years prior to becoming the associate dean for research in 2017. She also served as president of the Institute of Navigation (ION).

Earlier this year, Grejner-Brzezinska received The Ohio State University Distinguished Scholar Award and was named a Distinguished University Professor—an honor bestowed on no more than three exceptional faculty per year.