As the nation's primary supporter for research in the physical sciences, the DOE Office of Science (SC) has an unparalleled opportunity - and responsibility - to generate awareness, understanding, and support for scientific discovery and basic energy research. SC's Office of Communications and Public Affairs is charged with providing strategic counsel and tactical support for:
- Message iteration and refinement: We articulate and disseminate enterprise-level messages about basic research for use by SC and DOE leadership and stakeholders.
- Content identification and generation: We systematically identify opportunities to develop new content and share existing content about SC's research portfolio.
- Media placement and amplification: We help media outlets understand and report SC-sponsored basic research.
- Public engagement and participation: We identify SC's key publics and understand their information-seeking behaviors in order to keep them informed about our work.
- Environmental scanning: We regularly monitor media, legislative, and stakeholder communications to advise senior office and agency officials about emerging news and public affairs issues and concerns.
Phone: (202) 287-5813
Rick Borchelt is director of the Office for Communications and Public Affairs. He also manages the community of practice initiative, identifying and sharing best practices and communications insights from the science communication literature.
Project Manager, Stakeholder Outreach
Kate Bannan (Contractor)
As a project manager for stakeholder outreach, Kate is responsible for developing and implementing strategic communications and outreach programs for the office's external stakeholders, with an emphasis on universities. She is OCPA's lead on coordinating award ceremonies and events, including the Fermi Awards, the EO Lawrence Awards, the PECASE Awards, and the Science Speakers program. She also manages OCPA's external news platform and syndication site.
Michael Church (Contractor)
Michael leads the editorial process for the Office of Science research highlights—short summaries of significant scientific discoveries. Working closely with the program managers, he reviews content, tracks progress, and promotes highlights. As a member of the communications team, he helps to identify, write, and edit original material designed to engage and inform Office of Science stakeholders.
Allison leads OCPA's outreach and media team to identify Office of Science research stories and engage interested audiences through multiple platforms. She also works with the media to facilitate stories, and with senior program and scientific staff to prepare for interview opportunities. She also monitors news and trade publications for issues and stories of interest to the Office of Science, and works with the national laboratories under SC stewardship on honing pitches to national media.
Sandra Allen McLean
Sandra is responsible for identifying, curating, or creating lay-language content about Office of Science-funded research for DOE web sites, popular and trade media, and stakeholder education. She develops for public use narratives on research, especially R&D conducted jointly between labs or between labs and other research partners, or using the Office of Science user facilities. She also serves as liaison to program specialty areas.
Web Communications Specialist
Dean Pettersson (Contractor)
Dean manages and maintains the Office of Science website and twitter account. As part of the editorial team, he ensures that the content on those communications channels is refreshed regularly, and conducts frequent environmental scans in order to find articles and technologies that can be amplified and featured. Dean also gathers and analyzes site metrics, creating regular web reports and making recommendations for optimizing site usage based on those results. Finally, Dean serves as the first point of contact for website visitors, responding to emailed questions and/or redirecting them to appropriate parties.
Project Manager, Public Engagement
Keegan coordinates the Science Public Engagement Partnership, a collaboration between the Department of Energy, Office of Science and the Kavli Foundation to deepen the understanding of effective public engagement around basic research, explore how to improve this practice, and provide tools for scientists and communications professionals who support them. She is also responsible for developing and implementing a federal science public engagement community of practice.
Project Manager, Social Media
Shannon Brescher Shea
Shannon leads OCPA's content team to find and tell unique stories about the Office of Science's research. These stories, which span multiple laboratories or disciplines, provide science stakeholders with a broad understanding of the Office's mission and accomplishments. After writing or editing these pieces, she collaborates with the outreach team to strategically publicize them through traditional and new media outlets. She also leads the community of practice for the national laboratories' science communicators, the Science Public Outreach Community (SPOC).
Natalie Soldan (Contractor)
Natalie is OCPA's editorial workflow manager, managing laboratory input for the weekly Science News Dashboard report to senior DOE management and making sure news gets play on the Office of Science website. She also coordinates external publicity in the media and on the Hill for DOE's National Science Bowl. Through her environmental scans she keeps a pulse on Office of Science news, from both internal and external sources. Natalie is a program analyst - researching, evaluating, and measuring the effectiveness of disseminating Office of Science products.
Team Lead, Internal Communications
Roxanne Fournier Stone
Roxanne is charged with promulgating organizational, operational, and federal resource information of interest to the Office of Science employee community. She curates and approves content for the SC intranet; coordinates the employee speaker series; facilitates virtual town halls for senior management; and develops, reviews, and approves communications for internal broadcast. Through ongoing interface with management, staff and SC customer groups, Roxanne continually seeks to improve employee engagement, internal communication, and situational awareness within the Office of Science.