Michael Newkirk is an alumnus of Williams College in Williamstown, Massachusetts and the Ph.D. program in Applied Physics from the California Institute of Technology. He resides in Pasadena with his wife, Olivia Garfield, and three children.

Michael’s previous work in physics includes a two-year postdoctoral position in the Optoelectronics Research Department at AT&T Bell Laboratories (now Nokia Bell Labs) in New Jersey. His most recent work is at Emcore Corporation in Alhambra, California, where he is Senior Staff Scientist in the Advanced Development Department.