ann17044 — Announcement

ALMA Appoints New Director

10 July 2017

Following a competitive selection process, the ALMA Board has appointed Sean Dougherty to lead the Observatory as the new ALMA Director for 5 years, starting in April 2018.

Sean Dougherty is currently Director of the Dominion Radio Astrophysical Observatory, Canada’s national radio astronomy facility, which is run by NRC Herzberg Astronomy and Astrophysics.  He has served as a member of the ALMA Board representing North America for 4 years and was the chair of the ALMA Budget Committee for the last 2 years.

Sean received his PhD in Astrophysics from the University of Calgary, Canada, in 1993, following a degree in Mathematics and Physics from University of Nottingham, England. He has over 20 years of science and engineering management experience in radio astrophysics, from management and representation of Canada’s contributions to international radio astronomy facilities and R&D projects, to leadership of major science and engineering activities at the Dominion Radio Astrophysical Observatory (DRAO). He also led the construction and delivery of the WIDAR correlator for the Karl G. Jansky Very Large Array (JVLA), and is currently leading the international consortium designing the correlator-beamformer for the Square Kilometre Array (SKA).

The ALMA Board extended its appreciation to Stuartt Corder, who has served and will continue to serve as the ALMA acting Director during the transition process.

More Information

The Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA), an international astronomy facility, is a partnership of ESO, the U.S. National Science Foundation (NSF) and the National Institutes of Natural Sciences (NINS) of Japan in cooperation with the Republic of Chile. ALMA is funded by ESO on behalf of its Member States, by NSF in cooperation with the National Research Council of Canada (NRC) and the National Science Council of Taiwan (NSC) and by NINS in cooperation with the Academia Sinica (AS) in Taiwan and the Korea Astronomy and Space Science Institute (KASI). ALMA construction and operations are led by ESO on behalf of its Member States; by the National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO), managed by Associated Universities, Inc. (AUI), on behalf of North America; and by the National Astronomical Observatory of Japan (NAOJ) on behalf of East Asia. The Joint ALMA Observatory (JAO) provides the unified leadership and management of the construction, commissioning and operation of ALMA.


  • Further information about ALMA


Richard Hook
ESO Public Information Officer
Garching bei München, Germany
Tel: +49 89 3200 6655
Cell: +49 151 1537 3591

About the Announcement



Sean Dougherty appointed ALMA Director
Sean Dougherty appointed ALMA Director
High on the Chajnantor plateau
High on the Chajnantor plateau