The program


Dr. Celeste Rohlfing

Chief Operating Officer - American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS)


Joining the American Association for the Advancement of Sciences (AAAS) in 2015 as its Chief Operating Officer, Dr. Rohlfing has oversight of all programmatic activities as well as operational functions. She works closely with the CEO, Dr. Rush Holt, and the senior management team on strategic planning as AAAS undergoes a multimillion dollar transformation to a more member-facing, innovative, digital enterprise.

Previously, Dr. Rohlfing served as the Deputy Assistant Director at the National Science Foundation (NSF), for the Directorate of Mathematical and Physical Sciences. She was the senior career official managing the Directorate with a budget of $1.4B and over 170 staff. Dr. Rohlfing joined NSF in 1997 as a Program Director in the Chemistry Division, and later served as Head of the Office of Multidisciplinary Activities, acting Division Director for the Division of Chemistry, and for the Division of Materials Research. From 2010 to 2011, she also served as Assistant Director of Physical Sciences at the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy. From 1986 to 1997, Dr. Rohlfing was a Principal Member of Technical Staff at Sandia National Laboratories in California with over 70 scientific publications. Prior to joining Sandia, she was a Director's-Funded Postdoctoral Fellow at Los Alamos National Laboratory. Her bachelor's and doctoral degrees in chemistry are from Duke University (summa cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa) and Princeton University, respectively.

Dr. Rohlfing is a Fellow of AAAS, and the recipient of multiple NSF awards in management excellence, equal opportunity achievement, and collaborative integration. With respect to diversity, inclusion, and broadening participation, Dr. Rohlfing has initiated numerous efforts over her career at AAAS, NSF, and Sandia National Laboratories. Most recently, she organized a AAAS-hosted Forum on Implicit Bias in Peer Review, with 80 participants from scholarly publishing and federal funding agencies to discuss approaches to mitigating implicit bias effects.