Arden L. Bement became director of the National Science Foundation (NSF) in 2004. Before he joined NSF, he was a member of the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), where he had been director since 2001. Within NIST, he oversaw an agency with an annual budge of $773 million and an onsite research and administrative staff of 3,000. Previously, Bement served as the David A. Ross Distinguished Professor of Nuclear Engineering and the head of the School of Nuclear Engineering at Purdue University, where he has also held several other appointments. Bement also served as director of the Midwest Superconductivity Consortium and the Consortium for the Intelligent Management of the Electrical Power Grid.
Along with numerous NIST advisory roles, Bement served as a member of the U.S. National Science Board from 1989-1995. The board guides NSF activities and also serves as a policy advisory body to the president and Congress. As NSF director, Bement now serves as an ex-officio member of the NSB. He currently serves as a member of the U.S. National Commission for UNESCO and is vice chair of its Natural Sciences and Engineering Committee.
The Civic Scientist Lecture Series are a series of talks by leading scientists who have impacted public policy. The goal of the series is to expose scientists and future scientists to the idea that their roles expand outside of the laboratory. It gives the general public an opportunity to see accomplished scientists discuss their fields, hopefully promoting science and technology as a public good worthy of federal, state, and local funding.
Sponsorship for the Civic Scientist Lecture Series was generously provided by the Arch and Stella Rowan Foundation Inc.