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Physicist confirmed as director of Office of Science

Cherry Murray, a physicist and former Harvard University dean, will lead the Department of Energy’s research office after the Senate voted to confirm her for a job that’s been empty all of President Obama’s second term.

Murray will oversee most of the nation’s basic energy and physical sciences research, including the agency’s grant program and 10 of its 17 national laboratories. The Office of Science has a $5 billion budget.

Michael Lubell, the director of public affairs at the American Physical Society says he wasn’t expecting the confirmation vote but that the organization was very happy to hear the news. “The APS has extremely high regard for Cherry Murray as a scientist and an administrator,” he says.

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