Smooth transition in FRM II administration

Date: 05/12/2016

Johannes Nußbickel and Klaus Seebach Johannes Nußbickel and Klaus Seebach Taking care for the FRM II administration in the past : Klaus Seebach (at the right) and in the future: Johannes Nußbickel (at the left). © W. Schürmann/TUM

After ten years, administrative director, Dr. Klaus Seebach, has retired as of November. His great vision since studying brewery at the Technical University of Munich was to “understand the neutron source” and learn more about the science behind. Starting in 2007, his job began with an important financial project: negotiating the cooperation between the Helmholtz centres Jülich, Geesthacht, Berlin and Technical University of Munich for the Heinz Maier-Leibnitz Zentrum funded by the federal ministry of education and research. The result: A solid ten year funding for the MLZ. Besides managing the administration of FRM II with formerly 8 and now 16 employees, Klaus Seebach has also kept good contacts with industrial partners and all other neutron centres in Europe. Looking back, the 63-year-old most enjoyed “the scientists’ collegiality and missionary enthusiasm to explain their instruments”. Infected by the scientists’ eagerness, Seebach loved to guide visitors at the neutron source. He offers to be available as a representative for neutron science even beyond his retirement. Though he has a lot of other projects for the next years: exploring Europe by boat, motorcycle and car and spending time with his grandchild.

Johannes Nußbickel shares with Klaus Seebach the long industrial background: They both returned from management positions in industry to university. Nußbickel’s background as an electrical engineer and M.B.A. led him from EADS into the IT sector with Oracle, Infineon and mid-size software companies, where he was responsible for finance and administration. He admits a kind of “culture shock” moving from industry to university, but is thankful for the change: “Previously my job was to assure financial transparency, quality and efficiency and augment the value of a company. Now, at FRM II, I can use my experience from industry to serve science and an excellent University.” The 53 year old husband and father of two teenagers, living in Ottobrunn appreciates the two months overlap with Seebach: “For the first time in my professional life, I enjoyed the possibility that my predecessor was still available for questions.” Nußbickel is working on his “puzzle of the FRM II”, but already has an impression of the final picture. He is ready to take on the responsibility as administrative director together with his colleagues in the board, Prof. Dr. Winfried Petry (science) and Dr. Anton Kastenmüller (reactor operation). For the administration, Nußbickel emphasizes: “Administration is not a function in itself, but it is an important service role with many tasks and interfaces which have to be managed well: from the internal mail distribution via assuring proper financial information all the way to a reliable reporting to TUM steering committees or Ministries.”

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