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Imaging Science director named

An astronomer from the Space Telescope Institute (STScI) is the new director of RIT’s Chester F. Carlson Center for Imaging Science.

Stefi Baum joined RIT in July after 13 years at STScI, the science operations center for the Hubble Space Telescope and the next generation space telescope, the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST).

Stefi Baum

Baum earned a B.A. in physics from Harvard University and a Ph.D. in astronomy from the University of Maryland. Her research focuses on the study of activity in galaxies and its relation to galaxy evolution. At STScI, Baum was the division head of the engineering and software services, in charge of close to 140 scientists, engineers and computer scientists. She was responsible for the development and maintenance work for ground systems of the Hubble telescope and work for JWST.

Most recently, Baum completed a diplomacy fellowship program through the U.S. Department of State and American Institute of Physics while on a leave of absence from STScI. Branching out from astronomy, her work there promoted agriculture-biotechnology in developing and developed countries.

Baum brings to CIS an appreciation of the synergy between engineering and sciences.

“The Center, for me, is the place where a number of different technical or scientific pursuits that contribute to or rely on imaging – from astronomy to biomedical imaging to remote sensing to color science to visual perception – come together in a way where these related disciplines benefit from each other,” Baum says. “I’m thrilled to be involved with all aspects of CIS.”