Dr. Menas C. Kafatos (born on 25 March 1945) is the Fletcher Jones Endowed Professor of Computational Physics at Chapman University. He received his B.A. in Physics from Cornell University in 1967 and his Ph.D. in Physics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1972. After postdoctoral work at NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, he joined George Mason University and was University Professor of Interdisciplinary Sciences from 1984-2008, where he also served as Dean of the School of Computational Sciences and Director of the Center for Earth Observing and Space Research. He and a team of computational scientists joined Chapman University in fall, 2008. He is the Founding Dean of the Schmid College of Science and Technology at Chapman University, serving as dean in 2009 – 2012. He directs the Center of Excellence in Earth Systems Modeling and Observations. He has nearly 40 years of experience in undergraduate and graduate teaching and research. He has published numerous books including The Conscious Universe, The Non-local Universe (with Robert Nadeau, Springer-Verlag and Oxford), Principles of Integrative Science (with Mihai Draganescu, Romanian Academy of Sciences Press), and more than 250 articles in computational science, astrophysics, Earth systems science, hazards and global climate change, regional impacts of climate change, environmental issues, general relativity, cosmology, foundations of quantum theory, and consciousness. Total publications: 275+ which include refereed journal articles, books, refereed book chapters, and refereed published proceedings. Total Citations: 2,200+ Highest Citation of single article: 500. He is recipient of the Rustum Roy Award from the Chopra Foundation, February 2011, which “honors individuals whose devotion and commitment to their passion for finding answers in their field is matched only by their commitment to humanity”; an honorary member of the Romanian Academy of Sciences; Member, Board of Trustees, Universities Space Research Association (USRA), 2006-2008; Member, OCTANe Board, 2010 - present; Member, American Hellenic Council, 2011 – present; IEEE Orange County Chapter - Outstanding Leadership and Professional Service Award, October, 2011, etc. He has been interviewed numerous times by: U.S. national TV networks (ABC, KCBS, Voice of America), Korean and Greek TV networks (KBS1 in Korea; ERT, SKAI-Eco, in Greece; PIT in Cyprus; TV and radio stations in Crete, cretalive, tv CRETA, Krete tv), national and regional newspapers and radios in Korea, (Hankook), Greece (Kathimerini, Eleutherotypia, Ethnos, Patris), and the United States (National Herald, OC Register, L.A. Times, Washington Post, Atlanta Journal, Korea Times).
Dr. Stella Kafka, is the Executive Director and CEO of the AAVSO* (American Association of Variable Star Observers), an international organization focusing on engaging professional and amateur astronomers in science. Within the auspices of the AAVSO, Dr Kafka is working towards enabling individuals from all backgrounds to actively participate in research projects, building a community of science-savvy citizens who work collectively to understand some of the most dynamic phenomena in the universe. Dr Kafka acquired her BSc in Physics from the University of Athens (Greece) and her MA/PhD in Astronomy from Indiana University (USA). Before her tenure at the AAVSO, Dr Kafka held positions at CTIO, Spitzer Science Center/Caltech, Carnegie Institution of Washington/DTM and AIP Publishing. Her research focuses on exploring the properties of semi-detached binary star systems.