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The cover of the spring/summer 2004 Issue of SFSU Magazine

 

SFSU Magazine Online, Spring/Summer  2004, Volume 4, Number 1.

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  Alumni & FriendsAlumna Claudia Sturges smiles.

 


Washington Insider

Alumna Claudia Sturges spent the past 17 years bringing some of the nation's most qualified scientists together with some of the country's most influential leaders in government. "It's been a wonderful way to make a living," says Sturges, a native of Oakland, who lives in Washington, D.C. "I love the sense of contributing to the public good."

Sturges, an SF State English major in the early '60s, is retiring this year as director of the Public Policy Fellowship Programs for the American Association for the Advancement of Science, to try something completely new. She'll be volunteering full time for the John Kerry presidential campaign. "This has been a nonpartisan position," explains Sturges in a telephone interview from D.C. "But in my heart of hearts, I'm a Democrat."

As director of the fellowship program, Sturges has been responsible each year for guiding 130 scientists -- physicists, engineers, biologists, nuclear scientists, and environmental scientists -- through the offices of Congress, the White House, and a dozen executive branch agencies. The fellows, who receive a $60,000 stipend, work for one year in D.C. in areas such as diplomacy, global security and defense. "Our job is to advance science, but not lobby for it," Sturges explains. "Fellows learn the policy process and help inform politicians on such issues as HIV and AIDS, nuclear science, terrorism. Science doesn't always win, but being informed is a very good start."

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