Contact: Fanny Rodolakis, UEC Chair
I have always been a synchrotron addict – since the day I first walked through the storage ring of SOLEIL while it was still under construction. I was just an undergrad then, but it was love at first sight! After that, I had the opportunity to perform experiments at multiple beamlines at SOLEIL (where I did my PhD), but also ESRF, SPring-8, Elettra, APS, SRC, SSRL, and ALS, allowing me to acquire a solid experience in synchrotron radiation. Five years ago, I joined the new intermediate-energy x-ray beamline (29-ID IEX) at the APS, where I am now a beamline scientist.
I have been a member of the ALS Users’ Executive Committee (UEC) since 2016, and I have truly enjoyed the experience. My involvement started as co-chair for the 2016 ALS User Meeting, which has been a wonderful and rewarding (yet quite terrifying) adventure. For my second year as a UEC member, I was appointed secretary by our then-Chair Monika Blum (who did not leave me much choice!); it gave me the opportunity to work more closely with her in a joint effort to make the UEC more proactive. Last year we focused our effort on reformatting the User Meeting, and it worked out really well. One of last year’s novelties was launching the “Light Sources 101” UEC tutorial that I organized with Moni. It was such a great success that we are considering expanding the tutorial to two days this year, adding to the existing program to include basics about synchrotron radiation and a hands-on demo at the beamline. It is not going to be easy to pull off, but we had so much fun last year that I am really looking forward to the 2019 edition!
This year’s User Meeting will be held October 1–3 and will reinforce the changes spearheaded by Will Chueh (past Chair) and the 2018 User Meeting organizers Alex Frañó, Jennifer Ciezak-Jenkins, and Michael Jacobs. Please send us your suggestions for keynote/science speakers!
There is still a lot to do, both in terms of broadening the UEC outreach towards the user community and DOE, and increasing our impact on the ALS user operations and management, but I am very proud of what we have accomplished so far and I am looking forward to all the exciting challenges yet to come, especially with the ALS-U coming along. As the new Chair, I am hoping to bring a fresh perspective and insights from my user experience, while keeping in mind the concerns beamline staff are facing on a daily basis. I am a mother of two, so I know what it is like to have too many balls in the air. By fostering new ideas and helping make them a reality, I am confident that the UEC can make a difference in the ALS user community.
We are always looking for more feedback from the ALS user community and staff, so if you have any suggestions, please contact the UEC.