James Lawrence Powell is a professor of geochemistry with a PhD from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He has written five other books about earth science and climate change, and has several honorary degrees, including Doctor of Science degrees from Berea College and from Oberlin College. He taught Geology at Oberlin College for over 20 years and served as Acting President of Oberlin, President of Franklin and Marshall College, President of Reed College, President of the Franklin Institute Science Museum in Philadelphia, and President and Director of the Los Angeles County Museum of Natural History. He served for 12 years on the National Science Board and in 2015 he was elected a Fellow of the Committee for Skeptical Inquiry (CSI). Asteroid 1987 SH7 is named for him.