Professor Rolf-Dieter Heuer was elected Director General of CERN taking office January 2009. He started his studies of physics at the University of Stuttgart where he graduated in 1974, and obtained his PhD at the University of Heidelberg in 1977 under the supervision of Prof. Joachim Heintze. Prof. Heuer is an experimental particle physicist. Most of his scientific work has been related to the study of electron-positron reactions, development of experimental techniques, as well as construction and running of large detector systems.
In 1998, Rolf-Dieter Heuer was appointed to a chair at the University of Hamburg (C4 professor). He established a group working on the preparations for experiments at an electron-positron Linear Collider which quickly became one of the leading groups in this area world wide. Since December 2004, Prof. Heuer is research director for particle and astroparticle physics at the DESY laboratory, a member of the Helmholtz association. The main emphasis is to orient the particle physics groups at DESY towards LHC, the LHC luminosity upgrade, ILC and detector R&D, to maintain DESY as the central particle physics laboratory in Germany, and to strengthen the links to the Universities and the links to CERN. Recently he initiated the restructuring and focusing of German particle physics at the energy frontier with particular emphasis on the LHC.
Prof Heuer has been member in many scientific committees and advisory bodies where he acquired much expertise in reviewing projects as well as in judging and promoting people. During his 15 years at CERN he occupied the highest managerial positions in the OPAL experiment. As a research director at DESY he has gained additional managerial experience and established many international contacts.