Valerie Coffey is managing editor of Sky & Telescope and Night Sky magazines. She writes news for S&T and SkyandTelescope.com, edits sections of the magazines and the Web, and manages the editorial process.
She has a B.A. in physics from University of Nevada, Reno, and an M.A. in astronomy from Boston University. She was a teaching fellow at Boston University from 1993 to 1998, and taught astronomy at Bentley College (Waltham, MA) in 2000.
Valerie joined Sky & Telescope in April 2006. Previously, she was editor in chief of Connector Specifier, a business-to-business trade publication of PennWell (Nashua, NH) in the electronics and optics industry. She also held several other editorial positions at Laser Focus World, Optoelectronics Report, and WDM Solutions. Before becoming an editor, Valerie worked in optics sales and marketing, as well as in the planetarium industry. Her first job was pointing out stars at Fleischmann Planetarium in Reno (19851990). She also was a planetarium operator at Flandrau Planetarium in Tuscon, AZ (1987), and the New England Science Center in Worcester, MA (19901992). She operated telescopes for public observing programs during much of her career, including the 1985-86 visit of Halley's Comet to the inner solar system. She aspires to live long enough to see it return in 2061!
Valerie lives in the suburbs of Boston with her son, Richard, and a pet cockatiel named Sunset. She uses her 8-inch Schmidt-Cassegrain telescope primarily at her family's lakeside cabin in southern New Hampshire, where she was inspired by views of the Milky Way and Perseid meteors as a child. As a member of the International Dark Sky association, she hopes to help preserve dark skies in New England and other sites as a natural resource.