Director of Legislative Affairs
Thad Potter is the 2021 Director of Legislative affairs. His goal for the year is to increase legislative engagement both in and outside of NAGPS: this includes increasing the frequency and accessibility of the Legislative Letters blog, conducting more outreach with members and partner associations, and coordinating action days around issues relevant to graduate students outside of the bi-annual LAD’s. He was brought to graduate student advocacy by the 2017 tax reform bill, which would have made tuition waivers taxable income; fair compensation of graduate students remains an important issue to him.
Thad is an incoming 5th year PhD student in physics at the University of Massachusetts Lowell. Working at the Lowell Center for Space Science and Technology, his research focuses on the direct imaging of exoplanets using a balloon-borne coronagraph. Currently, he is working on developing a high-fidelity simulation framework for the next flight of the PICTURE-C mission.
Outside of research and NAGPS, Thad enjoys weightlifting, home brewing, and playing dungeons and dragons. He is an Eagle scout, receiving the award in 2013 from the South West Florida Council.