Dr. Kathryn Flanagan is the Interim Director of the Space Telescope Science Institute (STScI), a position she has held since March 2015. She is a Senior Scientist and served as Deputy Director since October 2012. Prior to that, Dr. Flanagan was appointed acting Deputy Director in January 2012. She came to STScI to head of the Mission Office for the James Webb Space Telescope, a position she held from 2007 to 2012. In that capacity she was responsible for the development of the Science and Operations Center at STScI for this NASA mission.
Dr. Flanagan earned her Bachelor’s degree and Ph.D. in physics at MIT, where she began working in the field of X-ray astronomy, with special interest in supernova remnants and the development of new instruments in space. She became part of the science research staff at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics and MIT, and has worked on flight instruments for the Einstein Observatory, the Chandra X-ray Observatory, and future X-ray missions. Dr. Flanagan has been active in education, first as a Peace Corps volunteer teaching math and physics in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, and later as Director for Education and Public Outreach for MIT’s Kavli Institute for Astrophysics and Space Research. She has participated in NASA’s advisory structure; co-chaired strategic planning documents and served on the Astrophysics Subcommittee. She also participated in the National Academy of Sciences Astronomy and Astrophysics Decadal Survey Astro2010.