July 2013 Women's
History Calendar

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Jill Tarter (1944–)


Are we alone in the universe? Dr. Jill Tarter is one of the first astronomers to devote her career to answering that question. A former NASA research scientist with a Ph.D. in astronomy from UC Berkeley, Tarter led Project Phoenix for the SETI Institute, which observed 800 star systems for radio signals that might indicate the presence of intelligent life. She continues her involvement with the Institute and its Allen Telescope Array, a group of radio antennas with powerful search capabilities. Tarter's hunt for alien life was the inspiration for the book and 1997 movie Contact.

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A passion for discovery: California women trailblazers
in science, technology, engineering and math

The July calendar shines a spotlight on four remarkable women who have achieved success in STEM fields – science, technology, engineering and mathematics. The calendar is produced by the California State Library, California Research Bureau, California Commission on the Status of Women and Girls and the California Department of Education. Photo courtesy of Seth Shostak, SETI Institute.