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As the newly elected vice president of, ORNL’s Wells will be leading a wave of efforts aimed at expanding and empowering OpenACC’s user base

On June 16, announced that Jack Wells of Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) will serve as its newly elected vice president. Wells is currently the director of science for ORNL’s National Center for Computational Sciences, home of the Department of Energy’s (DOE’s) Oak Ridge Leadership Computing Facility.

Wells will be the first to occupy the new role, created in an effort to increase user influence within the OpenACC organization. With the addition of his science expertise and user focus, OpenACC will continue to empower its user community to have a unified and significant voice in the development of the OpenACC specification.

“OpenACC is trying to do an even better job of understanding users’ needs for their programming language,” Wells said, “and they appointed me to this position based on my experience understanding users’ needs here at the ORNL Leadership Computing Facility, one of the largest GPU-accelerated centers in the world.”

Jack Wells, NCCS Director of Science. Image Credit: Jason Richards

OpenACC is a well-established directive-based programming model designed to provide a simple on-ramp to parallel computing on CPUs, GPUs, and other devices. This programming model was created for users by users with usability and best performance in mind. With more than 200 applications having chosen OpenACC, its ever-growing user community enjoys more time available for science and less spent on programming.

“The goal is to produce science, and it’s the users who do the science,” Wells said. “So as a user facility, we have to be user focused. OpenACC wants to focus on the features that are most frequently used. Everyone’s time is precious, and they want to work on the things that are going to be used. It’s a way of focusing the work and focusing the effort.”

As vice president, Wells will have significant influence over organizational development and help expand OpenACC adoption within the scientific community.

“I’m excited about the opportunity to continue to make this community more effective,” Wells said. “We’re trying to broaden the base of support for this community and the number of people who are actively involved. One goal that I have in joining is to broaden the base of the community that’s participating in leadership activities.”

Additionally, the organization announced an OpenACC Annual Meeting hosted by Riken, Japan, as well as upcoming hackathons and bootcamps around the world. is a nonprofit organization founded to help scientists and researchers do more science and less programming by providing a high-level directives-based programming model for high-performance computing. The charter of is to develop and deliver the OpenACC specification and to help educate and support scientists and researchers using or considering using OpenACC directives. The organization is run by academic and industry members in collaboration with the OpenACC User Community. Please visit for more information.

UT Battelle LLC manages ORNL for DOE’s Office of Science. The Office of Science is the single largest supporter of basic research in the physical sciences in the United States and is working to address some of the most pressing challenges of our time. For more information, please visit