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In this issue:
From the Director: Workgroup Meetings Redux
Walter "Juni" Zawojski's Work at SLAC
Word of the Week: SLACronym

SLAC Today

Friday - October 16, 2009

From the Director: Workgroup Meetings Redux

(Photo - Persis Drell)
(Photo by Harvey Lynch.)

This week lab staff braved wind and driving rain to come to work group meetings in Kavli auditorium. As in the past, I used this forum to let staff know what's on my mind and, more importantly, to hear what is on your mind. The discussions have been lively and informative. Each group has its own personality!

This time I started by speaking about the tremendous success of LCLS and the Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope. On a scale from "doesn't meet expectations" to "meets expectations" to "exceeds expectations," the LCLS and Fermi telescope "annihilate expectations!" I also talked about areas where the lab is improving but still have a long way to go, such as safety performance, human resources, procurement and finance. In other areas, where we know we need to invest for the future, we may have to defer major investments since there is only a limited amount we can do with the resources we have. We are in the process of making decisions on what we can realistically accomplish this year.

The questions and comments from the audience were varied. We had a lot of discussion around the recent laser incident. I was expecting that some might give me a hard time for lab management's decision to shut down the Class 3 and Class 4 lasers at the lab while the investigation was pending. I was delighted that no one questioned that step at all. Furthermore, no one saw this as just an isolated issue involving one individual who made a bad decision. The laboratory is ready to use this unfortunate incident to learn and move forward and that is what we will do with it. I was very very pleased by the discussion.

I encouraged complaints and I got some. They divided into two categories. There were people who raised issues constructively with a clear articulation of the problem, and an attempt to offer solutions. That was most helpful, especially when there was an understanding of the lab-wide implications of the issue.  Read more...

Walter "Juni" Zawojski's Work at SLAC

(Photo - Walter Zawojski)
(Photo: SLAC Archives & History Office.)

The SLAC Archives and History Office has gathered a collection of thoughts and work by and about Walter Zawojski, long-time SLAC photographer, artist and illustrator, who passed away on July 11.

Even today, decades after his retirement, not a week goes by at the lab without someone using one of the more than 1300 photographs, drawings, illustrations or paintings he created during his tenure at SLAC. Read more and see some of Zawojski's work on the SLAC Archives & History Web site...

(Image - video player)
 (Video by Brad Plummer, Calla Cofield and Jean Deken.)

Word of the Week: SLACronym

Science writer Calla Cofield discovers the true meaning of "SLACronym" with the help of SLAC archivist Jean Deken in this video installment of the Word of the Week.

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