Siegfried S. Hecker is a professor (research) in the Department of Management Science and Engineering and a senior fellow at CISAC and FSI. He is also an emeritus director of Los Alamos National Laboratory. He was co-director of CISAC from 2007-2012.
Hecker's research interests include plutonium science, nuclear weapons policy and international security, nuclear security (including nonproliferation and counter terrorism), and cooperative nuclear threat reduction. Over the past 22 years, he has fostered cooperation with the Russian nuclear laboratories to secure and safeguard the vast stockpile of ex-Soviet fissile materials.
His current research activities focus on the challenges of nuclear India, Pakistan, North Korea, and the nuclear aspirations of Iran. Hecker works closely with the Russian Academy of Sciences and is actively involved with the U.S. National Academies.
Hecker joined Los Alamos National Laboratory as graduate research assistant and postdoctoral fellow before returning as technical staff member following a tenure at General Motors Research. He led the laboratory's Materials Science and Technology Division and Center for Materials Science before serving as laboratory director from 1986 through 1997, and senior fellow until July 2005.
Among his professional distinctions, Hecker is a member of the National Academy of Engineering; foreign member of the Russian Academy of Sciences; fellow of the TMS, or Minerals, Metallurgy and Materials Society; fellow of the American Society for Metals; fellow of the American Physical Society, honorary member of the American Ceramics Society; and fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.
His achievements have been recognized with the Presidential Enrico Fermi Award; the National Academy of Engineering Arthur M. Bueche Award; the American Association for the Advancement of Science Award for Science Diplomacy; the American Physical Society’s Leo Szilard Lectureship; the American Nuclear Society's Seaborg Medal; the Department of Energy's E.O. Lawrence Award; the Los Alamos National Laboratory Medal; among other awards including the Eugene L. Grant Undergraduate Teaching Award at Stanford University and the Alumni Association Gold Medal and the Undergraduate Distinguished Alumni Award from Case Western Reserve University, where he earned his bachelor's, master's, and doctoral degrees in metallurgy.