UA Science
Left: Dr. Elizabeth "Pat" Roemer (1929-2016) , Right: Dr. Marcia Rieke, Inaugural Chair Holder

The Dr. Elizabeth Roemer Endowed Chair in Steward Observatory

Author: Buell T. Jannuzi

Through the generosity of Richard F. Caris, the Heising-Simons Foundation, Larry and Susan Allen, & Trip and Ann Wolbach, we have been able to establish the first endowed chair in the history of Steward Observatory and the Department of Astronomy at the University of Arizona.

The endowed chair is named in honor of Dr. Elizabeth “Pat” Roemer (1929-2016), a highly valued member of the Department of Astronomy, LPL, and Steward Observatory during the 1960s through 1990s. We honor Dr. Roemer because of her notable contributions, not only to the University of Arizona, but to the fields of Astronomy and Planetary Sciences. By identifying her as an exemplar of excellence and a role model for all of us, we also want to encourage greater diversity and equity in science, so necessary to making progress on the grand scientific challenges we will address in the decades to come.

The inaugural holder of the chair is Regents’ Professor of Astronomy Marcia Rieke, a member of the National Academy of Sciences with a distinguished record of scientific and scholarly achievements in astrophysics, instrumentation,...

100 Years of Public Evening Lectures

Lavinia Steward made her historic contribution of $60,000 to the University of Arizona “…TO BUY TELESCOPE OF HUGE SIZE,” on October 18, 1916.  However, the United States entry into World War I delayed the construction of the Steward Telescope and its 36-inch mirror.  That original Steward Telescope was finally used for the first time on July 17, 1922.  It would take another 9 months before the Steward Observatory and Telescope would be formally and officially dedicated on April 23, 1923.


The Telescope, however, was ready to be used before the official dedication date and Prof. Andrew Ellicott Douglass, the first Director of Steward Observatory, did not leave the...

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