Cherry Murray obtained both a BSc and a PhD in physics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Her research interests have varied from experimental condensed matter and surface physics to nanotechnology, innovation, research and development of telecommunications networks, national security and science and technology policy. Her current interests include policy, research, development and innovation to sustain human civilization on Earth.
From 1978 to 2004, Murray held a number of research positions, which culminated in the Senior Vice Presidency of Physical and Wireless Research, at Bell Laboratories, Lucent Technologies, formerly AT&T Bell Laboratories and previously Bell Telephone Laboratories, Inc. She then served at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory as Deputy Director for Science and Technology from 2004 to 2007, and as Principal Associate Director for Science and Technology from 2007 to 2009. She was dean of Harvard University’s School of Engineering and Applied Sciences from 2009 until 2014.
Murray served as the Director of the United States Department of Energy’s Office of Science from 2015 until 2017, overseeing $5.5 billion in competitive scientific research in the areas of advanced scientific computing, basic energy sciences, biological and environmental sciences, fusion energy sciences, high energy physics and nuclear physics, as well as the management of 10 national laboratories.
A member of the National Academy of Sciences, the National Academy of Engineering, and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, Murray has received the National Medal of Technology and Innovation as well as the American Physical Society Maria Goeppert-Mayer Award and George E. Pake Prize. She served as president of the American Physical Society in 2009, and currently serves as a director of the Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology Graduate University, the Fulbright University Vietnam and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.