Biden Appoints Most Diverse Presidents Council of Advisors on Science and Technology Yet
President Biden recently announced his 30 picks for the President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology (PCAST). The list of distinguished science, technology, and engineering leaders includes ASME member Dr. Dan E. Arvizu, who currently serves as Chancellor of the New Mexico State University System, and Dr. John O. Dabiri, Centennial Professor of Aeronautics and Mechanical Engineering at Caltech. Dr. Arvizu has been an active member of ASME’s Technology Transfer Committee and also participated in ASME’s Solar Standards Committees, and Dr. Dabiri has been involved in many of ASME’s Turbo Expo activities.
The White House is saying that Biden’s picks represent the most diverse PCAST in U.S. history. For example, no women have ever served as PCAST Co-Chairs, but with Biden’s picks two women are filling the roles. Furthermore, women make up half of the appointees and people of color and immigrants make up more than one-third.
Regarding the recent appointments, Dr. Eric Lander, PCAST Co-Chair and Director of the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy, stated, “President Biden understands that addressing the opportunities and challenges we face – to our health, our planet, our economic prosperity, and our national security – will require harnessing the full power of science and technology. Scientific progress depends on people seeing things in new ways, because they bring different lenses, different experiences, different passions, different questions. This PCAST is uniquely prepared because of its extraordinary scientific breadth, wide range of work experiences, and unprecedented diversity.”
It is clear the administration focused on choosing a diverse group of scientific leaders to come together to advise the President to ensure a broad range of perspectives and diversity in ideas. This focus on Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DE&I) is in line with ASME’s own DE&I priorities. ASME is deeply committed to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in our global engineering community and celebrates the range of voices, perspectives, backgrounds, and experiences of our community. It is ASME’s conscious intention to promote diversity, equity, and inclusion in programs, events, member outreach, learning and development opportunities, scholarships, publications, and communications, and to create safe spaces for groups and individuals to share concerns and discuss solutions.
DE&I is also a key pillar in how ASME thinks about and pursues its policy agenda. ASME focuses on raising awareness and addressing unconscious bias and promoting cultural competence both within ASME and in the engineering field at large. ASME is committed to achieving a truly diverse, equitable,
and inclusive science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) workforce in the
United States and around the world and offers the following guiding principles and policy
recommendations to achieve such a vision.
Read ASME’s latest position statement on “Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in the STEM Workforce.”
For the full list of PCAST appointees, visit: https://www.whitehouse.gov/briefing-room/statements-releases/2021/09/22/president-biden-announces-members-of-presidents-council-of-advisors-on-science-and-technology/.