Oak Ridge National Laboratory


News Release

Media Contact: Bill Cabage (cabagewh@ornl.gov)
Communications and External Relations


Paul Gilna to lead ORNL's BioEnergy Science Center

Paul Gilna will direct ORNL's BioEnergy Science Center.
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., Feb. 9, 2010 — Dr. Paul Gilna is joining the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory as director of the DOE BioEnergy Science Center (BESC).

As BESC director, Gilna will lead a $25 million-per-year multidisciplinary research center focused on achieving the breakthroughs in basic science needed to make production cellulosic biofuels--biofuels from nonfood plant fiber--cost-effective on a national scale.

"We are pleased to have Dr. Gilna join us in a research enterprise that represents an important element in the nation's energy future," said ORNL Associate Director for Biological and Environmental Sciences Martin Keller.

The BESC includes 19 institutional partners, including national laboratories, universities and private firms. The center is headquartered in the state-funded Joint Institute for Biological Sciences on the ORNL campus.

Gilna comes to ORNL from the California Institute for Telecommunications and Information Technology and the Center for Research in Biological Systems, both located at the University of California, San Diego. At San Diego he served as executive director for the Community Cyberinfrastructure for Advanced Marine Microbial Ecology Research and Analysis project. In addition, for the past two years Gilna has served as a member of the Annual BioEnergy Review Committee and is intimately familiar with the activities of the BioEnergy Centers in Oak Ridge, as well as those at the University of Wisconsin and the DOE's Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory.

Previously, Gilna was director of the Joint Genome Institute at Los Alamos National Laboratory and has worked at the National Science Foundation. His research interests range from molecular biology to microbiology to computational biology. He is scheduled to begin in his new position at ORNL on Feb. 22.

The BESC is funded by the U.S. Department of Energy Office of Science.

ORNL is managed by UT-Battelle for the U.S. Department of Energy Office of Science.


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