skip to Main Content


Vice President for Operations and External Relations

Dr. Patrick McCarthy joined The Observatories as a Carnegie Fellow in 1988, after completing his Ph.D. at the University of California at Berkeley. Dr. McCarthy received the prestigious Hubble Fellowship in 1991, and joined the faculty at the Observatories in 1992. He is known for his work on galaxies in the distant universe and in particular for his study of distant low frequency cosmic radio sources: sign posts to galaxies that are home to super-massive black holes.

Dr. McCarthy has been active in scientific and management oversight of large science projects and organizations. He has chaired numerous panels for NASA and the National Science Foundation, providing independent oversight of the Hubble Space, Spitzer Space Telescope and large telescopes on the ground. He was a member of the science team for the Wide-Field Camera 3 installed on Hubble and currently providing breathtaking new views of the early Universe.

He became involved with the GMT project very early in its development. McCarthy led the GMT Science Working Group that wrote the scientific case for the telescope project and defined the scientific and technical requirements for the facility. In 2008 the GMTO Board appointed him as the GMTO Director, the chief executive of the non-profit corporation charged with carrying out the development and operation of the telescope and related facilities. He led the project office through a series of successful independent design and cost reviews in 2013 and 2014 culminating in the approval of the start of construction in 2015. In July of 2015 the GMTO Board appointed him Interim President. In February 2017 he took on the role of Vice President under a permanent GMT President.

Back To Top