Published: Jan. 12, 2021

The Office of Information Technology (OIT) is launching a national search for a research computing director to build on the work of noted supercomputer strategist Thomas Hauser, who is departing CU Boulder on Feb. 28 to begin a new role at the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR).

Shelley Knuth

Shelley Knuth

Shelley Knuth, associate director of research computing user support in OIT Research Computing, will oversee the unit on an interim basis until a search for a successor is completed. Knuth currently leads user experience, consulting, and training efforts for research computing.

Since 2010, Hauser has led OIT Research Computing, which provides a computational and data infrastructure to support researchers on and off campus.

Additionally, the unit provides training and consulting in computational approaches and data management, in collaboration with national and regional groups and the Center for Research Data and Digital Scholarship (CRDDS).

“We are grateful for all of Thomas’s contributions and his extensive achievements over nearly a decade,” said Chief Information Officer Marin Stanek. “He has raised CU Boulder’s research computing reputation on a national scale, and it’s critical that, as a tier-one public research university, we build on the momentum and partnerships with regional universities he and his team have forged.”

Stanek said she is confident Knuth will effectively lead the research computing group as OIT conducts a national search for Hauser’s successor. A finalist is likely to be announced sometime in May, she said.

Over the next several months, OIT will work with key campus partners such as the Research and Innovation Office (RIO) and University Libraries to gain more insight into improving and scaling computational research support, Stanek said.

In addition to his other work, Hauser is one of two executive directors at the Center for Research Data and Digital Scholarship and chairs the Rocky Mountain Advanced Computing Consortium (RMACC), which collaborates on cyberinfrastructure projects throughout the Rocky Mountain region.

Under his leadership, the RMACC Summit, a supercomputer collaboration between CU Boulder and Colorado State University, arose in 2017 through a National Science Foundation grant. The supercomputer provides advanced computing capabilities to CU and CSU researchers working in astrophysics, bioinformatics, chemistry, computational fluid dynamics, earth sciences, life sciences, material science, physics and social sciences.

For her part, Knuth, who earned a doctorate in atmospheric and oceanic science at CU Boulder, is also the director of education and training for CRDDS, a collaboration between OIT Research Computing and University Libraries.

In addition, Knuth is a member of the leadership team for the Campus Champions Program, which provides advanced computing guidance to more than 600 researchers at more than 300 institutions across the United States.

“Shelley has excelled in improving the RC services for CU researchers’ needs and has collaborated effectively with campus stakeholders to provide consulting and training for researchers and students,” Hauser said.