Petra Rudolf is truly a European physicist. She was born in Germnay, moved to Italy for her last high school year and begun to study in Rome, followed by research stays in Trieste and the well-known Bell Labs in the USA, before moving back to Europe, to Namur, Belgium for her doctorate in 1993. In only ten years, she earned the chair of Experimental Solid-State Physics at the University of Groningen. In her more than 200 scientific articles she deals with graphene, organic thin films and molecular motors.
In addition to honours from half a dozen national physics societies and the European Commission, she was awarded the title of Knight by the Netherlands in 2013. Academically, for her work on molecular motors she received in 2007 the Descartes Prize of the European Commission.
Currently she is president-elect of the European Physical Society (EPS) and will take over the presidency in April 2019. Consequently, she will enrich the International Conference of Physics Students 2019 not only scientifically, but also as president of the EPS being a partnership as old as 20 years already.