Fifth Class of S&T Policy Fellows Goes to Work in Capitol
The 2013-2014 class of S&T Policy Fellows.
The Fellows are serving one-year appointments in various offices in both the Senate and the Assembly. Click on the
image for Fellow bios and office placement.
The fifth class of the California Science and Technology Policy Fellowship Program has begun work
in Sacramento, and the program is planning for the next five years.
"We are very proud of the legacy this program is building," said CCST Executive Director Susan
Hackwood. "The Science and Technology Policy Fellows are a resource unique at the state level, and
have demonstrated over the past four years that policymakers value having this sort of S&T expertise
The program, which began operation in 2009, places ten professional scientists in yearlong
appointments in the legislature. Modeled on a similar program run by the American Association for
the Advancement of Science (AAAS) in Congress for decades, the California S&T Policy Fellowship is
one of the only state-level programs of its kind. It is designed to enable fellows to learn about
the policy process while working with policymakers to address issues that involve science or
"The Legislature deals with many issues that involve questions of science," said Assemblyman Bill
Quirk, whose office is hosting one of the 2013-14 Fellows. Quirk, formerly a researcher at Lawrence
Livermore National Laboratory and the only science PhD in the Legislature, continued, "The analytic
and technical skills of the Science and Technology Fellows help us get to the scientific basis of
the issues. I am very happy to have a S&T Fellow on my staff."
The first four groups of Fellows have been well received by the legislature, receiving formal
acknowledgments and thanks at the end of their terms from both houses.
The Fellows are selected the previous year, and spend the first several weeks of their terms in a
training program which introduces them to the realities of working in the Legislature. The 'boot
camp' training regimen is designed to provide the Fellows with the specialized skills they need to
be successful in their assigned roles. Placements begin in December, when the Fellows begin working
under the guidance of legislative staff.
The intersection of science, technology and policy is frequently complex. Issues such as water
management or energy planning can involve considerable amounts of research and data. S&T Policy
Fellows apply their analytical and research expertise to help policymakers navigate these technical
Many previous fellows have continued employment in the public sector following the end of their
appointments, moving on to jobs with Legislative staff and in executive agencies of California and
the federal government. In addition, many participate in the S&T Fellows Alumni Program. This
program, which began in 2013, offers sustained and regular connections with other S&T Policy
Fellowship program alumni, including an annual conference among alumni and current Fellows, and
maintains a networking database and internet portal.
Placements for the 2013-14 Fellows include the offices of five Assembly members and the Senate
Energy, Utilities and Communications Committee, the Senate Natural Resources and Water Committee,
Senate Environmental Quality Committee, Senate Transportations and Housing Committee, and the Senate
Office of Research.
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