(University of Padua)
Yazan Momany was born in Zerqa, Jordan in 1970,
and grew up in Kuwait until age 12. Following a
five-year permanence in Jordan, in 1987 he joined
the United World College of the Adriatic in Trieste,
Italy where he obtained an International Baccalaureate.
In 1989, he moved to Bologna where he obtained a
degree in Astronomy in 1996, with an M.A. thesis
on an almost-known Galactic globular cluster, NGC
4833. In 1998 he moved to Padova where he received
his Ph.D., working on Local Group dwarf galaxies.
Ever since, a color-image of SagDIG has been his
screen-saver. In 2001, and following a 6-month collaboration
at the ESO Imaging Survey (Munich), he moved back
to Padova, married a beautiful wife and started
a postdoc position.
His research interests span a number of scientific
fields, including: optical and near-infrared characterization
of clusters and dwarf galaxies (anything resolved
in stars!), ultraviolet studies of extremely-hot
horizontal branch stars in globular clusters, and
more recently, Milky Way structure.
Enrico V. Held
(Padua Astronomical Observatory)
Enrico V. Held was born and grew up in Venice.
He obtained his Research Doctorate degree at the
Padua University in 1987, and soon after he became
an astronomer at the Bologna Astronomical Observatory,
where he was involved as a member of science teams
for the Italian Telescopio Nazionale Galileo.
His main research interests are in stellar populations,
galaxies, and their globular cluster systems. It
was as a young visiting scientist at Caltech that
he discovered dwarf galaxies and their importance
for understanding how galaxies were born. His work
initially focused on studying the internal dynamics
and the star formation of dwarf elliptical galaxies
using their integrated light. He thus pointed out
that many such galaxies in nearby galaxy clusters
are forming stars up to recent times. This research
led him naturally to investigations of nearby galaxies
that are close enough to us to be resolved into
individual stars. In the meantime he had moved to
the Padua Astronomical Observatory where he and
his collaborators endeavored to study the physical
properties of hundreds of thousands stars in dwarf
galaxies as a means to infer their histories of
star formation and chemical enrichment. Most recently,
with the lessons learned from nearby galaxies, he
ventured back to the study of dwarf galaxy populations
in more distant clusters of galaxies. Outside of
astronomy, Enrico likes spending time with Valeria
and Giulia, and enjoys mountaineering (especially
in the Dolomites) and Venetian rowing on the Lagoon
on cold, foggy winter mornings.
(European Southern Observatory, La Silla)
I. Saviane was born near Venice in the spring of
1965, although his family comes from the Belluno
province in the Dolomites. After his dark ages,
he got his Ph.D. in 1997 at the University of Padova,
with a thesis on old populations of Local Group
galaxies and clusters. In the meantime, he had spent
time as a visiting scientist at the Instituto de
Astrofísica de Canarias in Tenerife. After
receiving his Ph.D., he had several postdoc positions:
the first one in Padova and the second at UCLA.
During this time, the case of SagDIG stimulated
his interest in dwarf irregular galaxies, and he
started a project to investigate the luminosity-metallicity
relation for such objects. In 2001 he moved to ESO,
first as a fellow and later as a staff astronomer,
and he's now the head of the IR instrument force
at La Silla. Up to now his best-selling paper is
the 1999 investigation on the relative ages of Galactic
globular clusters. Among other results are the discovery
of population II stars in Leo I, and of a young
globular cluster in the Large Magellanic Cloud.
Recently he revised the distance to the Antennae
galaxies, and he's getting some fruits from the
dwarf irregulars project.
R. Michael Rich was born in 1957 in Los Angeles,
California. He received his B.A. from Pomona College
in 1979 and Ph.D. in astronomy from Caltech in 1986
with his thesis advisor, Jermy Mould. Rich was a
Carnegie Fellow from 1986-88 and was on the faculty
at Columbia University from 1989-1998. He has won
the Alfred P. Sloan Fellowship and the Japan Society
for the Promotion of Science Fellowship. He is presently
an Astronomer (equivalent to tenured Research Professor)
at UCLA. Rich is a member of the Galaxy Evolution
Explorer Science Team and specializes in the study
of stellar populations. His Ph.D. students include
Neil Tyson and Hongsheng Zhao. In 2002, Rich led
a team that used the STIS instrument on HST to discover
the first massive black hole in a globular cluster
G1, in the Andromeda Galaxy.
Rolly Bedin was born in 1973 in Padova, Italy.
He received his Ph.D. in Astronomy in 2002 from
the University of Padova, with the thesis: "HST
astrometry of Galactic globular clusters."
During his Ph.D. he spent one and a half years as
Associate Researcher at the Astronomy Department
of the California University in Berkeley. In 2003
he was a postdoc in Padova, and since September
2004 Rolly has been an ESO fellow in Garching. His
main research fields involve stellar populations,
and extrasolar planets.
(University of Padua)
Gullieuszik Marco was born in Padova in 1976, and
lives a dozen kilometers from Venice. He is a Ph.D.
student at the Padova University, where he took
a Laurea degree, defending a thesis based on wide
field observations of Galactic globular clusters.
At present he is working on Local Group dwarf galaxies.
His research fields include both spectroscopic and
photometric data observation and analysis, mainly
in the infrared spectral range. His main interest
however is focused on the resolved stellar populations
of Local Group dwarfs, so as to understand the mechanism
leading to their chemical evolution and star formation.
(Institute for Astronomy / University of
Luca Rizzi was born in Schio, Italy, in 1974. He
graduated in astronomy at Padova University, in
1999, with a dissertation on the use of Supernovae
Ia as distance indicators. He received his Ph.D.
in astronomy at the same university in 2003, defending
a thesis on the stellar populations in nearby dwarf
galaxies. He is now a junior scientific researcher
at the Institute for Astronomy of University of
Hawaii, working with Prof. Brent Tully. His main
interests lie on stellar populations, distance scale,
and galaxies evolution.
Konrad Kuijken is professor of Galactic Astronomy
at Leiden Observatory in the Netherlands, where
he researches the distribution of dark matter in
our own and other galaxies. He grew up in Belgium
and England. After studying applied mathematics
in Cambridge, and obtaining his Ph.D. in astronomy
there in 1988, he held a Research Fellowship at
the Canadian Institute for Theoretical Astrophysics
and then won a Hubble Fellowship at the Harvard-Smithsonian
Center for Astrophysics. In 1994 he moved to the
Kapteyn Institute, Groningen in the Netherlands,
and in 2002 he took up his present position in Leiden.
His research focuses on the mystery of the dark
matter, which he does by studying and modeling the
motions of objects in and around galaxies, and with
He is married, with two daughters.