Press Release

Robyn Williams AO and Professor Donna Strickland

Wednesday 22 July 2020

The 14th Pacific Rim Conference on Lasers and Electro-Optics (CLEO PR 2020) will be held as a completely virtual conference from Monday 3 – Wednesday 5 August 2020. The conference will open on Monday 3 August at 8:35 am with a hosted interview by Robyn Williams AO with the winner of the Nobel Prize in Physics 2018, Professor Donna Strickland from University of Waterloo, Canada.

Robyn Williams AO is a science journalist and broadcaster, best known for hosting the Science Show on the Australian Broadcasting Corporation. In 1993, Robyn was the first journalist elected as a Fellow Member of the Australian Academy of Science and was appointed AM in the 1988 Australian Bicentenary honours list, and in the same year received honorary doctorates in science from the University of Sydney and Macquarie and Deakin Universities. The ANU awarded him a doctorate of law, and he is a visiting professor at the University of NSW and an adjunct professor at the University of Queensland.

Donna Strickland is a professor in the Department of Physics and Astronomy at the University of Waterloo and is one of the recipients of the Nobel Prize in Physics 2018 for developing chirped pulse amplification with Gérard Mourou, her PhD supervisor at the time. The research has several applications today in industry and medicine. Strickland was a research associate at the National Research Council Canada, a physicist at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory and a member of technical staff at Princeton University. In 1997, she joined the University of Waterloo. She was named a Companion of the Order of Canada, is a recipient of a Sloan Research Fellowship, a Premier’s Research Excellence Award and a Cottrell Scholar Award. She received the Rochester Distinguished Scholar Award and the Eastman Medal from the University of Rochester. Strickland served as the president of the Optical Society (OSA) in 2013 and is a fellow of OSA, the Royal Society of Canada, and SPIE (International Society for Optics and Photonics). She is an honorary fellow of the Canadian Academy of Engineering as well as the Institute of Physics. She received the Golden Plate Award from the Academy of Achievement and holds numerous honorary doctorates.

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