Gavrilas named NRC’s executive director for operations

July 22, 2024, 12:00PMNuclear News


The Nuclear Regulatory Commission has named Mirela Gavrilas, currently head of the agency’s Office of Nuclear Security and Incident Response, executive director for operations, effective July 28.

The EDO position is the highest-ranking NRC career position, with responsibilities for overseeing the agency’s operational and administrative functions and serving as the chief operating officer.

“Mirela is extraordinarily qualified for this top leadership position, based on her technical expertise, communication and management skills, and demonstrated ability to modernize work processes and metrics,” said Christopher Hanson, NRC chair. “She is well poised to lead the NRC staff as we tackle challenges and embrace new opportunities, particularly after the recent passage of the ADVANCE Act.”

Lisa Marshall: Leading by example

July 12, 2024, 3:29PMNuclear NewsPaul LaTour

Lisa Marshall
2024-2025 ANS President

The importance of an education was instilled in Lisa Marshall at a young age by her grandmother. Born in Trinidad, Marshall was raised by her grandparents after her parents emigrated to Canada in pursuit of their educational goals. “My grandmother, Winifred, saw education as the route to the next level,” Marshall said, adding that the family wasn’t even sure if her grandmother had finished elementary school. “She wanted more for us than she had, and she believed the best way to achieve that was through an education.”

When Marshall was young, Winifred walked with her on the road from their house to school every day and was there to greet her when the school day was done. When Marshall was older, she went home for lunch, which her grandmother prepared. “She was a stabilizing force in my life,” Marshall said. “She kept me safe and nourished me. She taught me to be independent. And she always stressed the education part.”

Frank Augustine—ANS member since 1983

July 12, 2024, 9:30AMNuclear News

Augustine today, at home.

Augustine in 1991, during his years at Knolls Atomic Power Laboratory.

We welcome ANS members who have careered in the community to submit their own Nuclear Legacy stories, so that the personal history of nuclear power can be captured. For information on submitting your stories, contact

In college I started in physics, but in 1977, during my sophomore year, I decided to pick a more practical major: nuclear engineering. Like many young people, I wanted to make the world a better place.

During my junior year, the Three Mile Island accident occurred. Many of us in nuclear engineering wondered whether we had chosen the wrong major, but our professors assured us there was a future in nuclear power. It seemed at the time a common-sense solution to the predicted shortages of oil and gas, and it was far safer than coal. I stayed the course and ended up getting my bachelor’s and master’s degrees in nuclear engineering.

Mark Peters named MITRE president and CEO

July 9, 2024, 9:30AMNuclear News


Mark Peters will become president and chief executive officer of MITRE, effective September 3, 2024. He will succeed Jason Providakes, who previously announced his intention to retire after 37 years with the not-for-profit research and development company, including seven years as president and CEO.

Peters is a recognized expert in nuclear fuel cycle technologies, nuclear waste management, and national security, with more than 25 years of leadership and scientific discovery for federally funded R&D centers (FFRDCs). He currently serves as executive vice president, laboratory management and operations, at Battelle Memorial Institute, which, with other strategic partners, operates eight FFRDCs for the federal government, with responsibility for governance and oversight of the Department of Energy and Department of Homeland Security national laboratories.

Arnold Fritsch: ANS member since 1957

June 26, 2024, 9:30AMNuclear News

. . . and today.

Fritsch in 1969 . . .

We welcome ANS members who have careered in the community to submit their own Nuclear Legacy stories, so that the personal history of nuclear power can be captured. For information on submitting your stories, contact

It was a summer day in 1956 in Berkeley, Calif., when I, a freshly minted Ph.D., left Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory to travel to Pittsburgh, Pa., to join Westinghouse’s Commercial Atomic Power (CAPA) program. We were going to develop a large homogeneous power reactor—the future of energy. A year later, my efforts were diverted to lead what may have been one of the first nuclear safeguards equipment development programs funded by the Atomic Energy Commission.

Remembering William A. Anders

June 20, 2024, 7:01AMNuclear News

William A. Anders

William A. Anders, former chairman of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission and a former member of the American Nuclear Society, died on June 7 at 90 years of age.

In a June 18 statement, the NRC offered condolences on his passing.

“Chairman Anders had an illustrious career far beyond taking one of the most widely seen photos from space,” said NRC chair Christopher Hanson. “He was the only person to serve as commissioner on both the Atomic Energy Commission and NRC, and he served as the new agency’s first chairman, providing institutional continuity while unambiguously committing the agency to serve as an unbiased, independent, and open regulator. We are saddened by his death and extend our condolences to his family.”

Senate approves NRC chair Hanson’s renomination

June 4, 2024, 3:00PMNuclear News


Nuclear Regulatory Commission chair Christopher Hanson was renominated today by a Senate vote of 81–17 for a five-year term expiring June 30, 2029.

Earlier, in May, the U.S. Senate Environment and Public Works Committee voted 18–1 to advance Hanson’s renomination to the NRC. Hanson has been a commissioner since 2020 and was named chair by President Biden in January 2021.

“The American Nuclear Society commends the Senate for confirming the renomination of Christopher T. Hanson as chair of the U.S. NRC,” said American Nuclear Society Executive Director/Chief Executive Officer Craig Piercy. “We look forward to Chair Hanson’s continued leadership in ensuring the safe and efficient operation of our existing nuclear power plants and in developing a robust licensing framework for new nuclear technologies. The NRC is vital in ensuring the safe use of nuclear technology for zero-carbon energy, cancer detection and treatment, food safety, and more.”

DOE appoints Candice Robertson to role of EM-1

June 3, 2024, 12:00PMNuclear News



The Department of Energy has selected Candice Robertson to head the department’s Office of Environmental Management as acting assistant secretary (EM-1). Robertson has over 20 years of experience in radioactive waste management and previously served as principal deputy assistant secretary and as an associate principal deputy assistant secretary for DOE-EM.

Robertson replaces William "Ike" White, who was nominated by President Biden on May 23 to serve on the Defense Nuclear Facilities Safety Board, the independent agency responsible for ensuring that DOE facilities are protective of public health and safety. White, who has held the position of EM-1 since June 2019, will continue to serve as a senior advisor while he awaits confirmation to the DNFSB.

Halil Avci: ANS member since 1978

May 31, 2024, 9:30AMNuclear News

. . . and today.

Halil Avci in 1975 . . .

We welcome ANS members who have careered in the community to submit their own Nuclear Legacy stories, so that the personal history of nuclear power can be captured. For information on submitting your stories, contact

For me, going into nuclear engineering was an adventure. In 1968, as a 17-year-old in a small village in western Turkey, I took a government exam designed to select students to send abroad for college. I had to pick a major and a country before the exam, so I picked nuclear engineering and America because they both seemed exciting and full of potential. I came to the United States with the intent to obtain my bachelor’s degree and return to Turkey without delay, because I was told that I was needed to work on the construction of Turkey’s first nuclear power plant starting in 1974. That nuclear plant project did not materialize as planned, nor did I return to Turkey as expected.

BWXT employees trained as Nuclear Ambassadors

May 21, 2024, 9:30AMANS News

BWX Technologies has partnered with the American Nuclear Society to offer customized ANS Nuclear Ambassadors training to BWXT employees. The training kicked off in February with an initial two-hour virtual event that was presented to more than 60 BWXT employees, and it wrapped in April.

BWXT is the first company to participate in ANS’s newly revamped curriculum, which trains experts in K-12 learning.

ANS names new Fellows, award winners ahead of Annual Meeting

May 17, 2024, 7:07AMANS News

The American Nuclear Society extends its congratulations to the new ANS Fellows and recipients of this year’s honors and awards, which will be presented at the Opening Plenary and President’s Special Session during the 2024 ANS Annual Conference. Those being honored this year have made outstanding contributions to nuclear science and technology. The full list of awards follows below.

NRC Hanson's renomination clears Senate committee

May 2, 2024, 9:30AMNuclear News


The U.S. Senate Environment and Public Works Committee voted 18–1 yesterday to advance the renomination of Christopher T. Hanson as a member of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission. Hanson has been a commissioner since 2020, and was named chair by President Biden in January 2021. The full U.S. Senate will consider Hanson’s nomination later this month.

Voices of support: “Chair Hanson is a dedicated public [servant] who has thoughtfully and . . . skillfully led the [NRC] during his tenure as its chair. Throughout his time on the[NRC], he has demonstrated his commitment to ensuring the safety and the security of our nation’s use of nuclear energy,” said EPW committee chair Tom Carper (D., Del.) before the vote.

Former Exelon CEO Chris Crane remembered for “transformational milestones”

April 17, 2024, 3:02PMNuclear News


Exelon announced that Chris Crane, the company’s former chief executive, passed away on Saturday in Chicago at the age of 65.

Crane served as the company’s president and CEO from 2012 until his retirement in December 2022. During his tenure, he steered the energy company through several transformational milestones, including the successful mergers with Constellation Energy in 2012 and Pepco Holdings in 2016, creating the largest utility business by customer count in the United States.

In 2022, with the spin-off of Constellation as the generation and retail side of energy business (with the largest U.S. nuclear fleet), Crane led the creation of a stand-alone transmission and delivery energy company.

The 2024 ANS election results are in!

April 16, 2024, 12:00PMANS News

Spring marks the passing of the torch for American Nuclear Society leadership. During this election cycle, ANS members voted for the newest vice president/president-elect, four members-at-large for the Board of Directors, and one Young Member director for the Board. New professional division leadership was also decided on in the election, which opened on February 20 and closed on April 9. About 22 percent of eligible members voted—a similar turnout to last year.

Kathryn Huff stepping down from DOE Nuclear Energy post

April 15, 2024, 3:04PMNuclear News


After serving two years as the Department of Energy’s assistant secretary for Nuclear Energy, Kathryn Huff will vacate that position on May 3 and return to teaching. Huff had started at the DOE in May 2021, serving for one year as the principal deputy assistant secretary for Nuclear Energy.

“Serving in this capacity has been an unparalleled privilege, and I’m immensely grateful for the opportunity to have worked alongside you--the dedicated and talented public servants in Nuclear Energy, in DOE, and across the Biden-Harris Administration,” Huff wrote in an email announcement to colleagues last week. “I chose this timing to enable the smoothest transition back to my professorship at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign where my beloved research, students, husband, and dog await.”

Remembering Clyde Jupiter

April 4, 2024, 7:00AMNuclear News


Clyde Peter Jupiter passed away peacefully March 31, 2024, at the age of 95. Born October 31, 1928, in New Orleans, La., Jupiter attended public and parochial schools in New Orleans, graduating from Xavier University in 1948. He was a member of the Alpha Phi Alpha fraternity and was noted as one of the first African Americans to attend Notre Dame University in 1949.

Following graduation, Jupiter pursued a career in the field of physics, where he was renowned for his contributions to nuclear radiation detection and the advancing of nuclear energy. His career in the nuclear field included working for such agencies as the Atomic Energy Commission, Lawrence Laboratories, and the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.

He also served in the U.S. Army from 1954 to 1956 at the Chemical Corps Laboratory, in Fort Detrick, Md.

Utilities Services Alliance’s Christensen to retire

April 3, 2024, 12:01PMNuclear News


John Christensen, president and chief executive officer of Utilities Service Alliance (USA), has announced his retirement effective at the end of 2024. His career spans more than 41 years in the nuclear industry.

“The last 17 years have been some of the most challenging and gratifying years in my career,” he said. “The people I’ve had the opportunity to work with have been a great inspiration. I am extremely proud of everything we have accomplished since I joined USA.”

Ken Peters, USA’s chair of the board, noted, “John’s service and drive in helping the members of USA improve safety, plant operations and financial performance is a testament to his commitment to our industry. We wish John the very best in his retirement.”

Remembering Joseph M. Hendrie

March 29, 2024, 9:30AMNuclear NewsRobert A. Bari

Joseph M. Hendrie

To those of us who knew Joe, even prior to his appointment as chair of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, it is an understatement to say that he was a larger-than-life member of the nuclear science and technology enterprise. He was best known to the broader community for two major accomplishments: the design and construction of the High Flux Beam Reactor (HFBR) at Brookhaven National Laboratory and the creation of the standard review plan (SRP) for the U.S. Atomic Energy Commission.

In addition to the products of these endeavors becoming major fundaments to their respective communities, they were uniquely Joe. The safety analysis report for the HFBR was written essentially single-handedly by him. This was true of the SRP as well, which became the key safety review document for the NRC as it performed safety reviews for the growing number of power reactor applications in the United States. His deep technical knowledge of nuclear engineering and his extraordinary management skills made this possible.

Remembering Charles E. Till

March 28, 2024, 9:30AMNuclear News

Charles E. Till

Charles E. Till, an ANS member since 1963 and Fellow since 1987, passed away on March 22 at the age of 89. He earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the University of Saskatchewan and a Ph.D. in nuclear engineering from Imperial College, University of London. Till initially worked for the Civilian Atomic Power Department of the Canadian General Electric Company, where he was the physicist in charge of the startup of the first prototype CANDU reactor in Canada.

Till joined Argonne National Laboratory in 1963 in the Applied Physics Division, where he worked as an experimentalist in the Fast Critical Experiments program. He then moved to additional positions of increasing responsibility, becoming division director in 1973. Under his leadership, the Applied Physics Division established itself as one of the elite reactor physics organizations in the world. Both the experimental (critical experiments and nuclear data measurements) and nuclear analysis methods work were internationally recognized. Till led Argonne’s participation in the International Nuclear Fuel Cycle Evaluation (INFCE), and he was the lead U.S. delegate to INFCE Working Group 5, Fast Breeders.

Hanson to be renominated as NRC chair and member

March 22, 2024, 9:30AMNuclear News


President Biden announced yesterday his intent to renominate Christopher T. Hanson to be a member and chair of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.

Hanson was designated NRC chair by Biden in 2021 and was sworn in as a commissioner on June 8, 2020. He is filling the remainder of a five-year term ending on June 30, 2024.

Experience: Hanson has more than two decades of government and private-sector experience in nuclear energy. Prior to joining the NRC, he served as a staff member on the Senate Appropriations Committee, where he oversaw civilian and national security nuclear programs. Before working in the Senate, he was a senior advisor in the Department of Energy’s Office of Nuclear Energy. He also worked in the DOE’s Office of the Chief Financial Officer, where he oversaw nuclear and environmental cleanup programs and managed the department’s relationship with congressional appropriations committees.