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David L. Brown New CRD Director

July 7, 2011

Contact: Jon Bashor,, +1 510 486 5849


David L. Brown assumes the CRD directorship on August 30.

David L. Brown, who is currently the Deputy Associate Director for Science and Technology in the Computation Directorate at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, has been named as the new director for the Computational Research Division (CRD). Brown will join Berkeley Lab on Aug. 30.

In his new position, Brown will provide scientific leadership for CRD research and development programs in mathematics, computer science and computational science, and serve as chief spokesperson for CRD in interactions with external agencies, including the Department of Energy.

"As computational science plays an increasingly important role in meeting DOE's research mission, the Computational Research Division Director is a key position at Berkeley Lab," said Berkeley Lab Director Paul Alivisatos. "With the appointment of David Brown, CRD will be well positioned to maintain and grow our successful programs in applied math, computer science, computational science and networking. We are fortunate to have someone of David's caliber lead our efforts in these critical fields."

Brown's research expertise and interests lie in the development and analysis of algorithms for the solution of partial differential equations (PDEs). In particular, his research has focused on adaptive composite overlapping grid techniques for solving PDEs in complex moving geometries and in the analysis of difference approximations for PDEs. At LLNL, he led the highly successful Overture project, which in 2001 was named one of the 100 "most important discoveries in the past 25 years" by the DOE Office of Science.

"We are very happy that David has accepted this position and look forward to bringing his leadership and research expertise to CRD," said Kathy Yelick, Berkeley Lab Associate Laboratory Director for Computing Sciences. "In addition to being an accomplished mathematician, David also has extensive experience working with the Department of Energy and other laboratories, making him an ideal fit for this position."

In 2007, Brown convened an independent panel from the applied math research community to investigate how past, present and future math research supported by DOE’s Office of Advanced Scientific Computing Research (ASCR) could be applied to help tackle challenges being addressed by both the DOE Office of Science and the offices of Nuclear Energy, Fossil Energy, Environmental Management, Legacy Management, Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, Electricity Delivery and Energy Reliability, and Civilian Radioactive Waste Management, as well as the National Nuclear Security Administration. Read the panel’s report.

Brown joined LLNL’s Computation Directorate in 1998 following 14 years as a research staff member and manager at Los Alamos National Laboratory. He was the first Computational Mathematics group leader in the Center for Applied Scientific Computing and later became the Deputy Department Head for Science & Technology in the Computing Applications and Research Department. Brown has been the Computation Directorate LDRD Point of Contact for six years and LLNL’s Principal Point of Contact for ASCR for the past four years.

Brown earned his Ph.D. in Applied Mathematics from the California Institute of Technology in 1982. He also holds a B.S. in Physics and an M.S. in Geophysics from Stanford University, where his father was a professor.

“I would like to thank David for his dedicated service. He has worked tirelessly over these years to help build and strengthen Computation’s R&D programs, and leaves us a much stronger research organization than we had 13 years ago when he first arrived,” said Dona Crawford, LLNL’s Associate Director for Computation, in announcing Brown’s move to Berkeley Lab. “I look forward to continuing to work with David in his new role at Berkeley Lab.”

About Berkeley Lab

Founded in 1931 on the belief that the biggest scientific challenges are best addressed by teams, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and its scientists have been recognized with 16 Nobel Prizes. Today, Berkeley Lab researchers develop sustainable energy and environmental solutions, create useful new materials, advance the frontiers of computing, and probe the mysteries of life, matter, and the universe. Scientists from around the world rely on the Lab’s facilities for their own discovery science. Berkeley Lab is a multiprogram national laboratory, managed by the University of California for the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Science.

DOE’s Office of Science is the single largest supporter of basic research in the physical sciences in the United States, and is working to address some of the most pressing challenges of our time. For more information, please visit