Two Fermilab scientists elected to the APS Division of Particles and Fields executive committee

Two Fermilab scientists, Vaia Papadimitriou and Kelly Stifter, were elected in December 2022 to the American Physical Society’s Division of Particles and Fields’ executive committee. Their terms started on Jan. 1, 2023.

Fermilab scientist Vaia Papadimitriou has been elected to the DPF executive committee as a member-at-large for a three-year term.

Vaia Papadimitriou. Photo: Ryan Postel, Fermilab

“I am honored and delighted to have been given the opportunity to serve on the DPF executive committee,” said Papadimitriou.  “The next few years will be especially important for the future of particle physics in the U.S., with the 2022 Snowmass study concluding and the P5 Panel developing and communicating its recommendations. DPF will play an important leadership role during this process, and I am looking forward to contribute to it.”

Papadimitriou is a senior scientist at Fermilab. She has 37 years of experience in the design, construction, operation, data analysis, and leadership and management of particle physics experiments and of accelerators and beamlines. Since 2018, she has served as deputy manager for the U.S. High-Luminosity LHC CMS Detector Upgrade Project.

Papadimitriou became Fermilab’s first Leon M. Lederman Fellow in 1990. Subsequently, starting in 1994, she served as professor of physics for 11 years at Texas Tech University, followed by three years as adjunct professor. She joined the Fermilab staff in 2003 as a senior scientist. Internationally recognized for her contributions to quarkonium and b-quark physics, Papadimitriou has performed scientific research in several high-energy physics projects over the course of her career; her work includes fixed target, energy frontier (CDF and CMS) and neutrino (DUNE) experiments.

She has also made significant contributions to the accelerator side of the field, serving on the Fermilab Accelerator Division’s leadership team for 12 years. She served as project manager of the LBNE/LBNF Beamline from 2009 to 2018.

Kelly Stifter

Kelly Stifter is a Fermilab Lederman Fellow, and she joined the DPF executive committee as the early career member-at-large for a one-year term.

I look forward to serving on the DPF executive committee because I am driven to pursue structural change that will allow for more equitable outcomes for all members of our community and to ensure that all stakeholders have strong voices in decisions that directly affect them, their careers and their well-being,” said Stifter.

She sees the DPF as a body with the potential to influence both the direction of the field as well as the culture of the community, both of which have significant impacts on the experiences and careers of early career community members.

Stifter’s work involves pursuing two efforts to further push the boundaries of dark matter searches: She is leading the dark matter search analysis for the SENSEI experiment, which expects to produce dark matter limits at some of the lowest particle dark matter masses accessible through current detector technologies.

 She also works on calibrating and characterizing quantum devices with the Quantum Science Center collaboration.