Scott Jaschik at IHE asked folks who should be hired to replace Larry Summers as Harvard's president. The article appeared today.
As I told Scott, if the Harvard Board has any sense at all, they'll woo a woman scientist who has children. I suggested Mary-Claire King, a professor of medicine and genome sciences at the University of Washington. Last year she She was inducted into the National Academy of Science -- a big deal because only 187 out of 2,059 Academy members are women: less than 1%. After all, Harvard usually likes people who are in the 99th percentile.
As I pointed out in "Breast Feeding Scientists" (my second blog post ever), one of the reasons I like Mary-Clare King was what she said when a reporter asked her what the largest barrier was to women in science. She replied that “by far the biggest obstacle is how to have enough hours in the day to be the mother of a young child and do the work.”
King’s proposed solution to the difficulty of being a mother and being a laboratory scientist is the provision of excellent, on-site child care facilities. King practices what she preaches (and sounds like an awesome mentor). A year ago, she had three women working in her lab who were breast-feeding their infants. She bought a breast milk pump (with NIH funds) and set up a special room in the lab where these scientist-mothers could go to pump and store their milk. That way the women could keep breast-feeding after returning to work from maternity leave.
Sounds like she'd be a good Harvard President, right?
Please check out the IHE article and add your own nomination to the growing pool of candidates. I'd love to see your additions to the growing list of suggestions from readers. Please post your pick here as well so we can chuckle together...
Do you think that Bitch Ph.D. would be willing apply for the position?