June 2013 Women
History Calendar

Persis Drell previous week next week

Persis Drell (1955–)

Physicist

It was the indignation of being "tracked low" in 7th grade math that motivated Dr. Persis Drell to prove her teachers wrong. She went on to earn a B.A. in math and physics from Wellesley College and a Ph.D. in atomic physics from UC Berkeley. Drell, elected to the National Academy of Sciences in 2010, spent 14 years teaching physics at Cornell University before joining the Stanford Linear Accelerator Center (SLAC), which she directed from 2007-2012. Under her leadership, SLAC opened a new frontier for science by shifting focus from smashing particles to using x-ray lasers, illuminating the molecular world as never before.

A passion for discovery: California women trailblazers
in science, technology, engineering and math

The June calendar shines a spotlight on four remarkable women who have achieved success in STEM fields — science, technology, engineering and mathematics. The calendar is produced by the California State Library, California Research Bureau, California Commission on the Status of Women and Girls and the California Department of Education. Photo courtesy of Linda Cicero/Stanford University.