WASHINGTON, D.C.--After 2 years of turmoil, the National Academy of Engineering (NAE) has a new president. William Wulf, a University of Virginia computer engineer, was elected today by the NAE's members to lead their powerful academy into the next century.
Wulf has been acting NAE president since last July, when the membership ousted Harold Liebowitz from the post following a controversial tenure (see ScienceNOW, 5 December 1996). Critics had accused Liebowitz of mismanagement, but his successful 1995 campaign against the candidate hand-picked by the NAE council left its mark: This year's NAE election was the first in history in which two candidates were endorsed by the governing board as part of an effort to broaden the choices for the 400-odd member organization.
Wulf, who defeated University of California, Berkeley, computer scientist Eugene Wong, already has taken a more active role than some of his predecessors. Last year, he led an effort to delay a global database treaty that many scientists feared would hurt their access to information. His term expires in 2001.