Fabiola Gianotti (Italian: [faˈbiːola dʒaˈnɔtti]; born October 29, 1960) is an Italian particle physicist, the CERN (European Organization for Nuclear Research) Director-General, and the first woman to hold this position. Her mandate began on 1 January 2016 and runs for a period of five years.
Gianotti in 2011
|Born|| October 29, 1960
|Alma mater||University of Milan|
|Known for||ATLAS experiment at the CERN Large Hadron Collider|
Since 1996, following several postdoctoral positions, including a fellowship at CERN, she has been a research physicist in the Physics Department of CERN, the European Organization for Nuclear Research, and since August 2013 an honorary Professor at the University of Edinburgh. She is also a member of the Italian Academy of Sciences (Accademia Nazionale dei Lincei), foreign associate member of the US National Academy of Sciences and foreign associate of the French Academy of Science.
She was/is a member of several international committees, such as the Scientific Council of the CNRS (France), the Physics Advisory Committee of the Fermilab Laboratory (USA), the Council of the European Physical Society, the Scientific Council of the DESY Laboratory (Germany), the Scientific Advisory Committee of NIKHEF (Netherlands). She is a member of the Scientific Advisory Board  of the UN Secretary-General, Mr Ban Ki-moon.
In 2009 Gianotti was elected as the project leader and spokesperson of the ATLAS project at CERN. ATLAS involved a collaboration of around 3,000 physicists from 180 institutions in 38 countries. ATLAS was one of the two experiments involved in the observation of the Higgs boson. On 4 July 2012 Gianotti announced the discovery of the particle. Till then the Higgs boson was a theoretical part of the standard model in particle physics theory to explain how some fundamental particles acquire mass. Gianottis deep understanding of many ATLAS aspects and her leadership were recognised as major factors in the discovery.
Gianotti is the author or co-author of more than 500 publications in peer-reviewed scientific journals. She has given more than 30 invited plenary talks at the major international conferences in the field. A list of her scientific publications is recorded in the database Inspire HEP.
In a 2010 interview, Gianotti said that she saw no contradiction between science and faith and they belong to "two different spheres". In an interview by la Repubblica, she said that "Science and religion are separate disciplines, though not antithetical. You can be a physicist and have faith or not."
Gianotti was included among the “Top 100 most inspirational women” by The Guardian newspaper (UK, 2011), ranked 5th in Time magazine’s Personality of the Year (USA, 2012), included among the “Top 100 most influential women” by Forbes magazine (USA, 2013) and considered among the “Leading Global Thinkers of 2013” by Foreign Policy magazine (USA, 2013).