Fabiola Gianotti is an experimental particle physicist. She has worked on several experiments at CERN, covering detector R&D and construction, software development and data analysis. A large part of her activity was devoted to the search for the Higgs boson. From March 2009 to February 2013 she was project leader (”Spokesperson”) of the ATLAS experiment. This was the period when the ATLAS and CMS experiments discovered the Higgs boson.
Dr Gianotti is a foreign member of 8 academies of science and received 15 honorary doctorates from Universities worldwide. She was awarded the honour of “Cavaliere di Gran Croce dell’Ordine al Merito della Repubblica Italiana”, she shared the Special Breakthrough Prize in Fundamental Physics and the Enrico Fermi Prize of the Italian Physical Society, and received the Medal of Honour of the Niels Bohr Institute, the Wilhelm Exner Medal (Vienna) and the Tate medal of the American Institute of Physics for International Leadership. She was ranked 5th in Time magazine’s Personality of the Year in 2012. Since 1 January 2016 she is Director-General of CERN until 31 December 2025. This is the first time in CERN’s history that a Director-General is reappointed for a full second term. She is the first woman in this role.