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Swearing-In Ceremony Remarks at the Swearing In of the Director of the National Science Foundation, the Director of the Office of Science and Technology Policy, and the Director of the Office of Drug Abuse Policy.

June 01, 1977

This morning we have another one of those ceremonies that gives me a great deal of pride in being able to introduce to our Nation people of distinguished qualifications and deep dedication to their own professions, who at some sacrifice to themselves have agreed to come in and serve our country.

Dr. Richard Atkinson, who has been the Acting Director of the National Science Foundation for the last year, is a person who brings to this tremendously important organization a background that is somewhat unique. He's trained in psychology and the humanities and in science, and I think it is significant that we are now departing from the physical sciences to some degree in seeking a broader scope for research and development in determining how best we can deal with the complicated world that we face in years to come.

There are about $800 million that are channeled into innovative thought processes to decide how our world might be shaped by human beings in these trying times. And I am very grateful to him for being willing to serve in this capacity.

This is a position that must have the trust and confidence of the scientific community-all its disciplines--and I am grateful to have a man of his stature and ability and reputation serve in this position. He comes from Stanford originally.

And we have also this morning, coming to be introduced to you and to be sworn in officially, Dr. Frank Press from MIT. We considered all kinds of people and backgrounds and experiences in being my own adviser within the White House on scientific matters.

Dr. Harold Brown is well qualified in physics, and I particularly wanted someone to help me who had a broader scope of understanding. And as you know, Dr. Frank Press is an expert on Earth sciences. He's one of those who has been able to form a very close working relationship with the scientific community in the Soviet Union. He's been very widely respected throughout the world for his work in seismographic determinations and did the basic planning for the method that we've now used to monitor compliance with nuclear explosives set off beneath the Earth's surface.

In the few weeks that Frank Press has been here in the White House working with me, I've really been favorably impressed and gratified at the broad range of his understanding on scientific matters. And he will be sworn in this morning, too, as an integral part of my own administration.

He attends the Cabinet meetings. He attends the senior staff meetings. And whether it might be new weapons systems, scientific aspects of SALT negotiations, problems with defense experimentations that might lead to new opportunities there, or whether it involves problems with weather determination or, in many instances, problems involving social sciences, he's been very helpful in helping me to make the right decisions.

The other man who will be sworn in this morning is one of the best personal friends I have in the world, Dr. Peter Bourne. Dr. Bourne came to our country when, I think, he was about 17 years old--I may not be exactly right about that--from England. His father, Dr. Geoffrey Bourne, is in charge of the Yerkes Primate Center at Emory University where advanced work is done in the testing of primates to determine how their characteristics might help human beings live a better life.

Dr. Bourne is a psychiatrist. He's become perhaps, I think, the world's foremost expert on drugs--their origin, their processing, their distribution, their sale, their use, the effect on the human body, how they might be controlled. He's written perhaps a similar work on alcoholism, and he's a scholar who has a great commitment to the humane aspect of science.

Dr. Bourne is also an expert on medicine and gives me and Joe Califano a great deal of help in determining the policies for the future in that field. He's a good diplomat. Because of his special knowledge, Dr. Bourne over a number of years has been invited to go into countries with whom we have no diplomatic relations and which on occasion have been very bitter enemies of ours. But he's been invited to come in to understand their particular problems in health, alcoholism, drug problems, and has helped to open up avenues of discussion that have been very valuable to me and to the State Department.

I'm very grateful also, that he will be working for us in our Office of Drug Abuse Policy, and he will be a great help to me, to the State Department, to the Congress, and to the other organizations in our Government.

So, this is a morning when we are taking a great step forward in recementing the relationship between scientific knowledge, the probing of new areas of human comprehension on the one hand, and the political application of that knowledge on the other, for the benefit of all mankind and, Mary, and womankind. [Laughter]

I am very grateful that these men are willing to serve, and now they will be given the oath of office.

Thank you very much.

Note: The President spoke at 10:30 a.m. in the Rose Garden at the White House. In his concluding remarks, he referred to Dr. Bourne's wife, Mary E. King, Deputy Director of ACTION.

Following the President's remarks, David L. Bazelon, Chief Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, administered the oath of office.

Jimmy Carter, Swearing-In Ceremony Remarks at the Swearing In of the Director of the National Science Foundation, the Director of the Office of Science and Technology Policy, and the Director of the Office of Drug Abuse Policy. Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/243339

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