Name: Steven Chu
Hometown: St. Louis, Missouri
Current City: Washington, D.C.
Job at time of Appointment: professor at the University of California, Berkeley and the director of the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory
Steven Chu attended Berkeley and later became a professor of physics at Stanford University in 1987. Chu comes from a family of scholars; his father earned an advanced chemical engineering degree at MIT while his maternal grandfather earned advanced civil engineering degrees at Cornell University.As a scientist, Chu is known for his research in cooling and trapping of atoms with laser light, which won him the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1997. He is a vocal advocate for more research into alternative energy and nuclear power, arguing that a shift away from fossil fuels is essential to combat global warming.