Welcome to SpotLight, a look at the people who make up Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory. This edition, which typically appears in print form, is available on the web only due to the shelter-in-place in response to COVID-19.

We hope you enjoy this issue of Spotlight. We’d also like to hear from you. Send us your thoughts and suggestions, whether it’s what you like — or even if you don’t — about this magazine, or if there is something you would like to see in coming editions. You can reach us at pao [at] llnl.gov.

Inside this issue

Let it grow, let it grow, let it grow

Ed McGee remembers roaming his Livermore neighborhood with his sister, pulling a wagon full of zucchini, looking for takers of the squash that his mother had grown in their backyard.

“Maybe my love of gardening comes from that,” said Magee, who works in the Engineering Directorate. “In our first garden, my mom planted seven zucchini plants (zucchinis are prolific producers). I remember loading the wagon full of the zucchini and meeting all the neighbors,” he said, laughing as he looked back. “After two or three weeks, no one was opening their doors.”

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'Dr. Radiation' combats fear with knowledge

Mark Hart has earned an unusual nickname over the years. It isn’t due to his work ensuring the safety and security of nuclear weapons, nor is it due to his prior hands-on work with plutonium.

Rather, LLNL scientist Hart is known for perusing antique shops, fairs and garage sales with Geiger counter and black light in hand, searching for items to add to his collection of radioactive antiques and artifacts. To dealers at these events, Hart has come to be known as Dr. Radiation.

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Inspiring a passion for the great outdoors

For Craig Fish, the great outdoors is not just a pastime, it is his job, his hobby and his passion. From working in environmental protection at the Laboratory for 26 years, to volunteering for Volunteers for Outdoor California (VOCal), Fish takes his love of the outdoors and preserving the environment to a whole new level.

Fish’s love for the outdoors runs deep in his blood and was instilled in him early on by his family, especially his father and brother. He spent his childhood in a suburb outside Boston, in Needham, Massachusetts. “As a kid I spent most of my time playing in the outdoors, exploring woods, creeks, reservoirs, sandpits and railroad tracks nearby my house and across town,” Fish said. “I also loved climbing trees, building tree huts in my backyard and riding my bike. But my favorite thing to do was to find paths in the woods and find where they led.”

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