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Franklin M. ("Lynn") Orr, Jr. was the founding director of the Precourt Institute for Energy from 2009 until 2014, when he became the Obama administration's under secretary for science and energy at the U.S. Department of Energy. He remained in that position through January 2017. Lynn was also founding director of Stanford’s Global Climate & Energy Project from 2002 to 2008 and dean of the School of Earth Sciences (now the School of Earth, Energy & Environmental Sciences) from 1994 to 2002. He joined Stanford's faculty in 1985 and is the Keleen & Carlton Beal Chair of Petroleum Engineering in the Department of Energy Resources Engineering, emeritus. He is a senior fellow of the Precourt Institute and a member of the Stanford Woods Institute for the Environment advisory council.
Lynn's research activities focus on how complex fluid mixtures flow in the porous rocks in the Earth's crust, the design of gas injection processes for enhanced oil recovery, and CO2 storage in subsurface formations. He is a member of the National Academy of Engineering. Lynn was vice chair of the board of directors of the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute until 2014 and rejoined that board in 2017. He chaired the advisory panel of the Packard Fellowships for Science & Engineering for the David & Lucile Packard Foundation until 2014, rejoining that panel in 2017, and was a foundation board member from 1999-2008. He is a member of the ClimateWorks Foundation board of directors.