Washington: US President Barack Obama’s top science official and Padma Shri awardee Subra Suresh has resigned from his current position to join the prestigious Carnegie Mellon University as its chief.
As director of National Science Foundation (NSF) since 2010, 56-year-old Suresh was responsible for driving scientific research of the country.
With an annual budget of $7 billion, the independent federal science agency is charged with advancing all fields of fundamental science and engineering research and related education.
“Subra has shown himself to be a consummate scientist and engineer—beholden to evidence and committed to upholding the highest scientific standards. He has also done his part to make sure the American people benefit from advances in technology, and opened up more opportunities for women, minorities, and other under-represented groups,” Obama said accepting his resignation.
“We have been very fortunate to have Subra Suresh guiding the National Science Foundation for the last two years,” he said in a statement. “I am grateful for his service.”
In a note to his staff, Suresh said that he would step down from his current role at NSF at the end of March to accept an appointment as Carnegie Mellon University’s ninth president from 1 July in the institute’s 113-year history. He will succeed Dr Jared L. Cohon, who is stepping down from the position after 16 years.
“It has been my extraordinary honour to lead the National Science Foundation, which is blessed with a marvellous cohort of highly talented and devoted staff, as well as hundreds of thousands of innovative grantees and investigators from every field of science and engineering. I am grateful for the opportunity to serve the country in this capacity,” he said.
John Holdren, assistant to the president for science and technology and director of the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy, thanked Suresh for his outstanding service as director of the National Science Foundation.
Suresh has co-authored more than 240 journal articles, registered 21 patents and written three widely used materials science books.