The 'Scientific American 10 ' list that featured the President included an article by Sally Lehrman, who praised Obama's commitment to science: "After eight long years in exile, scientists have been enthusiastically welcomed back into the White House. In the first few months of his administration, President Barack Obama acted with remarkable speed to place science at the center of policymaking on climate change, energy, health care and research funding. He wiped away science-averse policies."
Lehrman later explained the consideration that went into placing Obama on the list:
When making the choice to award the president, we searched among less obvious candidates who were deserving of broader public recognition. But President Obama's accomplishments in a matter of weeks of taking office were so extraordinary that he could not be denied. The new President's actions have proved almost startling after the Bush administration, which was criticized for routine suppression of scientific knowledge for political purposes. But the impact of the Obama White House will likely reach far beyond such a facile comparison. The president's unprecedented emphasis on science and technology should propel basic research, innovation, and U.S. scientific and technological competitiveness for generations to come.The introduction of the piece declared: "This year's Scientific American 10 pays tribute to the exceptional foresight and accomplishment of a select group whose achievements, particularly during the past year, stand out from those of their peers...This combination of leadership and inventiveness exhibited among the Scientific American winners for 2009 serves as a template for how we might consider tackling the most seemingly intractable problems of resource depletion, inadequate health care and desperate educational need."
-Kyle Drennen is a news analyst at the Media Research Center.