Jim Green, director of the planetary science division at NASA’s science mission director, has been appointed chief scientist at the space agency in a move that takes effect May 1.
He will succeed the retiring Gale Allen, who has served as acting chief scientist since 2016, and will act as principal adviser to the NASA administrator and other senior leaders on science policy and programs, strategic planning and investment review, the agency said Tuesday.
Lori Glaze, head of the planetary geology, geophysics and geochemistry laboratory at Goddard Space Flight Center, will take over as interim planetary science division director.
Green “brings a variety of scientific research experience and planetary exploration expertise to the chief scientist position that will allow him to hit the ground running with great enthusiasm and engagement,” said Robert Lightfoot, acting NASA administrator.
Green became the planetary science division chief in August 2006 and since then, he has led various missions such as the Mars rovers Spirit and the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter.
He started his career at NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center as part of the magnetospheric physics branch and served for seven years as head of the national space science data center at Goddard.