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Brent Dibner named chair of Dibner Institute

The Dibner Fund recently named Brent Dibner to succeed his father, David, as chairman of the Dibner Institute for the History of Science and Technology. David Dibner is now chairman emeritus and a trustee of the Dibner Institute.

Brent Dibner, 50, has served as vice president and trustee of the Dibner Fund as well as a trustee of the Dibner Institute for the last 10 years. His involvement with the history of science and technology began in grade school when he catalogued and preserved books and manuscripts for his grandfather at the Burndy Library, then in Norwalk, Conn., and now located at the Dibner Institute and in Norwalk.

Dibner was a practicing engineer who designed commercial and naval ships in the early 1970s and since 1995 has been president of a National Historic Landmark tugboat that pioneered diesel-electric technology. He has edited a quarterly maritime historic journal since 1992.

Dibner is a vice president at Mercer Management Consulting, where he directs consulting services to companies engaged in global bulk shipping and logistics. He joined the firm in 1977. He earned a B.S.E. in naval architecture and marine engineering from the University of Michigan and an M.B.A. from Harvard Business School.

The Dibner Institute, an independent institution located at MIT, is a 10-year-old internationally recognized center for advanced research in the history of science and technology, with well-established programs including senior, post-doctoral and graduate resident fellowships. Harvard University and Boston University join MIT in a scholarly consortium participating in the programs of the Dibner Institute. Representatives of all three universities, along with the Dibner Fund and certain outside members, constitute the governing board.

The Dibner Fund, a private foundation in Connecticut established in 1959 by Bern Dibner, supports the Dibner Institute. David Dibner will continue as chairman of the Dibner Fund, which has expanded its mission over the years to include programs in science education, humanitarian aid, the preservation of water resources, peaceful coexistence, and Jewish heritage and culture, in addition to its ongoing commitment to the history of science and technology.

A version of this article appeared in MIT Tech Talk on May 22, 2002.

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