ASP Board Past President
University of Virginia/National Radio Astronomy Observatory
Kelsey Johnson is an Associate Professor of Astronomy at the University of Virginia, adjunct faculty at the National Radio Astronomy Observatory, and the founder and director of the Dark Skies Bright Kids outreach program. Her research is focused on star formation throughout the universe, and in particular the impact of different physical environments. She received her Ph.D. from the University of Colorado in 2001, where she held a NASA Graduate Research Fellowship and was awarded the Dorothy Martin Woman Doctoral Student Award, awarded annually to top female graduate student in any discipline. After earning her doctorate, Johnson held a National Science Foundation Fellowship, followed by a Hubble Fellowship. She has received the National Science Foundation CAREER award, a Packard Foundation Fellowship, a Distinguished young investigator FEST award, and an Excellence in Diversity award. The Dark Skies Bright Kids program that she created and directs was named a 2012 “Program That Works” by the Virginia Math and Science Coalition. A new course that Johnson created, entitled “Unsolved Mysteries in the Universe” is among the most popular in the department. In 2013 Johnson won an “All University Teaching Award” from the University of Virginia, and in 2015 she was elected to the Academy of Teaching at UVA. She gives numerous public lectures and interviews each year, as well as participating in Space Science for Teachers workshops.