'Astronomer In-Residence' Dr. Richard Crowe joins staff at Imiloa Astronomy Center

University of Hawaiʻi
Gloria Chun Hoo, (808) 969-9705
Imiloa Astronomy Center of Hawaii
Posted: Jul 31, 2006

HILO, Hawaiʻi — University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo Chancellor Rose Tseng and ʻImiloa Astronomy Center Director Peter Giles together have announced the appointment of Dr. Richard Crowe, professor of astronomy at UH Hilo, to become the Center‘s first ʻastronomer-in-residence.‘

In this newly-created position as ʻImiloa‘s astronomer-in-residence, Crowe will assist the Center‘s education department in developing astronomy-related public and educational programs, deliver talks and planetarium programs, and serve as liaison with the observatories based in Hawaiʻi as well as with the University‘s Department of Physics and Astronomy, where Crowe will continue as faculty on a half-time basis during the school year.

"We are pleased to create this new position that strengthens the ties between the UH Hilo faculty, the new ʻImiloa Astronomy Center, and the observatories," said Dr. Tseng in announcing the appointment. "Dr. Crowe is both a scholar and educator with a passion for working with the community here in Hilo."

The new ʻImiloa Astronomy Center of Hawaiʻi, which opened its doors in February, 2006, is a new educational center and visitor attraction in Hilo, Hawaiʻi, that bridges Hawaiian culture and traditions with science and astronomy. The Center is a part of the University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo.

Peter Giles, the Center‘s director, called the appointment an important next step for ʻImiloa. "Dr. Crowe brings a wealth of experience and knowledge to the Center‘s staff, providing expertise to review and update its astronomy exhibits, to train staff and volunteers, and work collaboratively with the 13 world-class observatories on Mauna Kea. We are delighted at this new addition to our staff. "

As an educator long engaged in stimulating interest in science, Crowe has been a frequent speaker on astronomy, and has delivered over 50 StarLab portable planetarium presentations to public and private schools in the last five years. He regularly trains university student observers using the 24-inch UH telescope atop Mauna Kea.

He recently completed the revision of the popular book, Stars over Hawaiʻi, which integrates Polynesian skylore, voyaging and Hawaiian culture into astronomy. He has also been involved in two nationally-funded programs that encourage local and Hawaiian students to enter careers in space science as well as in the Journey through the Universe program.

Crowe has conducted extensive research and published papers on pulsating stars, stellar evolution and spectroscopy. He joined the UH Hilo faculty in 1987, teaching a range of classes from introductory physics and astronomy to senior level astrophysics and quantum mechanics. He has been a strong advocate of building bridges between Hawaiian cultural specialists and Mauna Kea astronomers. A Canadian by birth, Dr. Crowe received his Ph.D. from the University of Toronto. Active in the local Hilo community, he has sung in the University Chorus, the UH Hilo Chamber Singers, and the Kanilehua Chorale, and has played clarinet in the Hawaiʻi County Band for 18 years. He is also the president-elect of the Rotary Club of Hilo Bay.

For more information, visit: http://www.imiloahawaii.org