Dr. Rita Sambruna is the Deputy Director of the Astrophysics Division, Code 660. Previously she was at HQ, where she held positions of science management and leadership. In 2019 she was awarded the NASA Extraordinary Achievement Medal for her leadership on the 2020 Astrophysics Decadal Survey studies. Rita was elected Fellow of the American Physical Society in 2020 and a Fellow of the American Astronomical Society in 2021.
From 2000 till 2005, Dr. Sambruna was the Clare Boothe Luce Professor of Astrophysics at George Mason University, where she taught undergraduate and graduate classes and led an independent research program supported by external funds. She received the NSF CAREER and NASA LTSA awards.
October 1992, Master Phil. SISSA/ISAS, Trieste, Italy. Thesis: The EXOSAT Spectral Survey of Blazars
October 1989, Laurea degree, Univ. of Milan, Italy. Thesis: X-ray Observations the Magnetic Cataclysmic Variables E1405--451 (V834 Cen) and E1013--477 (KO Vel)
American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS)
2019 - Present
American Astronomical Society
1991 - Present
American Physical Society
2020 - Present
High Energy Astrophysics Division
2000 - Present
NASA Extraordinary Achievement Medal, 2020
NSF CAREER, 2014
NASA LTSA, 2000
Clare Boothe Luce Professorship, 2000
NRC Research Fellowship, 1995-1997
Other Professional Information
38th on list of “Top Italian Scientists” [107 out of 455; 09 May 2020]
Among World’s Top 2% of Scientists (top 3% in subfield of Astronomy & Astrophysics). (cf. Ioannidis JPA, Boyack KW, Baas J (2020)
Rita is a certified Yoga Teacher with specialization in Yoga for Cancer. She is trained in Applied Behavior Analysis and its applications to non-human animals. Rita speaks Italian, French, Latin/Greek, and a bit of Spanish.