At present, NM Tech has a search on for the full-time permanent director position. The search committee, headed by Dr. Nelia Dunbar, acting Vice President of Research, has developed a position profile that can be found at this link (PDF file).

Dr. Daniel B. Stephens has a bachelor's degree in geological science from Penn State, a master's degree in hydrology from Stanford, and a doctorate in hydrology from University of Arizona. He was on the faculty at New Mexico Tech from 1979 to 1989 and was geoscience department chair for three of those years. His research focused on vadose zone and groundwater hydrology. He has numerous publications in peer-reviewed journals and is author of Vadose Zone Hydrology, the first textbook of this kind.

He left Socorro to start an environmental and water resources consulting firm, Daniel B. Stephens & Associates, Inc., in Albuquerque. There, much of his work was in providing litigation support as an expert witness, mostly on complex Superfund-related cases. He retired from full-time professional work in 2020.

He served on University of Arizona advisory boards for its hydrology program for over 20 years and was recognized for his service with the Sydney S. Woods Alumni Service Award. He was on the board of directors of the National Groundwater Association, received from the California Groundwater Association its Lifetime Achievement Award, and was inducted into the National Academy of Engineering.