Sigma Xi Hires New Director of Science Communications and Publications and Editor-in-Chief of American Scientist

August 09, 2017

Media contact:
Heather Thorstensen
Manager of Communications
Sigma Xi, The Scientific Research Honor Society or (919) 549-4691 ext. 216

Fenella SaundersRESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK, N.C.—Sigma Xi, The Scientific Research Honor Society welcomes Fenella Saunders as director of science communications and publications and editor-in-chief of American Scientist

American Scientist is a bi-monthly magazine that features the work of the world’s leading researchers and their perspectives on today’s issues in science and technology. With a combination of clear editing, beautiful photography, and smart graphics, American Scientist contributes to Sigma Xi’s mission to promote the public’s understanding of science.

Ms. Saunders will also oversee the Society’s journal for high school researchers, the publication of booklets, manuals, and reports, and the development of innovative initiatives to help researchers communicate their findings to the public. This role includes expanding the reach of Sigma Xi’s publications to new audiences and more broadly in the professional fields of scientists and engineers. 

Ms. Saunders served as the executive editor of American Scientist, where she has been on staff since 2005. She was previously a science writer/editor for New York University School of Medicine’s publications office and associate editor of their magazine, NYU Physician. Additionally, she spent eight years at Discover magazine, where she was an associate editor and online editor. A coauthor of Popular Science’s Space 2100: To Mars and Beyond in the Century to Come (Time, 2003), she has also freelanced for Popular Mechanics, Scholastic, The Learning Channel, and Discovery Channel. She earned a bachelor’s degree in computer science from Duke University and a master’s degree in psychology and animal behavior from Hunter College of the City University of New York. She was selected as a fellow for the Knight Science Journalism Fellowship's nanotechnology workshops at MIT in 2009 and in 2015, and for their multimedia boot camp at University of California, Berkeley’s School of Journalism in 2010. She has been a Sigma Xi member since 2004 and is currently the secretary of Sigma Xi’s Research Triangle Park Chapter. Besides her skills in print writing and editing, she is proficient in audio and video editing, and has a deep understanding of social media, new media, and publishing in the digital age.

More About Sigma Xi: Sigma Xi, The Scientific Research Honor Society is the world’s largest multidisciplinary honor society for scientists and engineers. Its mission is to enhance the health of the research enterprise, foster integrity in science and engineering, and promote the public understanding of science for the purpose of improving the human condition. Sigma Xi chapters can be found at colleges and universities, government laboratories, and industry research centers around the world. More than 200 Nobel Prize winners have been members. The Society is based in Research Triangle Park, North Carolina. On Twitter: @SigmaXiSociety