Anna H. Spitz directs the Agnese Nelms Haury Program in Environment and Social Justice. This program invests in the educational pipeline through faculty chairs and fellowships, and student scholarships and operates a competitive grantmaking program to promote collaborative projects through a bequest from Mrs. Haury. The program honors Mrs. Haury’s life-long work by supporting individuals and activities that seek to understand and find solutions to some of today’s most difficult challenges. The Haury Program leverages the power of university-community partnerships to address environmental and social justice challenges.
Prior to her appointment as director of the Haury Program in 2014, Anna led education and public engagement for the OSIRIS-REx asteroid sample return mission at the University of Arizona (UA). She began employment at UA in 2000 at the Steward Observatory and worked on various projects including the Mt. Graham Observatory, the Large Binocular Telescope, the Large Optics Test and Integration Site (LOTIS), and Biosphere 2. She also served as the UA’s Campus Coordinator for the Arizona Water Institute (AWI), the Managing Director of the Center for Astrobiology. Prior to joining the OSIRIS-REx mission as Education and Public Outreach Lead she was Director of Mt. Lemmon SkyCenter from 2009 to 2011.
Anna worked in the environmental field for over a decade before joining Steward Observatory. She has continued to serve on local boards of non-profits and to participate in research and consulting in the environmental field as well as freelance writing and YouTube video activities during her years at UA. Along with Chris Impey and Bill Stoeger, she is the editor of Encountering Life in the Universe: Ethical Foundations and Social Implications of Astrobiology published in Fall 2013 by University of Arizona Press.
Asteroid 25760 Annaspitz, discovered by the Catalina Sky Survey, is named after her.