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2006 ASP Annual Award Recipients

Richard H. Emmons Award
Leo Connolly
California State University San Bernardino

Dr. Leo Connolly has devoted his life to science education in astronomy and physics, as a teacher for over 32 years, an observatory Director for 6 years, a fund raiser, writer, public speaker, and mentor to students and faculty at seven institutions of higher learning. He has concentrated on introductory courses for non-majors, engaging thousands of students to astronomy.

Dr. Connolly helped raise $600,000 from the Keck Foundation for the Observatory Project at Cal State, San Bernardino, and co-authored another successful proposal for $200,000 from California Portland Cement Co. for the same project, which is an on-going effort. As Director of the Summer Science program at the Thatcher School in Ojai, he touched the lives of talented high school students, helping them understand science and supporting a vital need in the United States for attracting young people to study physics and astronomy. In 1995, the IAU recognized his years of service to this summer program by naming asteroid 1988 LC 6479 LEO CONNOLLY, a rare honor that is most befitting of his contributions to science education.

He contributed a column to Astronomical Society of the Pacific's flagship publication, Mercury, for many years. He has published numerous research articles and written instructional materials for Prentice Hall. As a public speaker, he has delivered more than 130 presentations to amateur astronomy, Rotary, and Kiwanis clubs promoting astronomy to a wider public. He has also led over 60 public views of astronomical events, such as eclipses and meteor showers, exposing many non-professional to the excitement of observing the heavens.

Dr. Connolly's love of astronomy and physics and his selfless devotion to science education make him a natural choice for the Astronomical Society of the Pacific's 2006 Richard H. Emmons Award.