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Timothy D. Swindle appointed Head and Director

Professor Timothy D. Swindle has been named the new Director of the Lunar and Planetary Laboratory and Head of the Department of Planetary Sciences, replacing the late Michael J. Drake, who served in that role for 17 years.

Tim has been on the faculty at LPL since 1986, arriving shortly after receiving his Ph.D. in Physics from Washington University in St. Louis. While at LPL, he has won a Provost's General Education Teaching Award and a College of Science Distinguished Teaching Award. In 2008, he became the first Assistant Director of LPL, and served as Acting Department Head and Director in early 2010 and again in late 2011.

His research is on extraterrestrials materials like meteorites and lunar samples, and he has had a noble gas mass spectrometry laboratory on campus since 1990. He is a Fellow of the Meteoritical Society, and has served the Society as a member of the Council, the Treasurer, and a member (and later chair) of both the Awards Committee and Endowment Committee. As anyone who has gotten him started on Antarctic stories knows, he has served as a member of the Antarctic Search for Meteorites field party on the Polar Plateau four times, as many times as any volunteer in the program.

When not at work, he can often be found riding his bicycle around Tucson (usually avoiding getting hit by cars) or going to baseball games.

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