Marie Curie, born Maria Skodowska in Warsaw, Russian-occupied Poland (November 7, 1867 - July 4, 1934), was a Polish-French physicist and chemist. She was a pioneer in the early field of radioactivity and later become the first two-time Nobel laureate and the only person to win Nobel Prizes in two different fields of science (physics in 1903 and chemistry in 1911).
Albert Einstein (14 March 1879 – 18 April 1955) was a German-born theoretical physicist whose work on the theory of relativity earned him a Noble Prize. Although a pacifist, Einstein played a major role in the birth of the Atomic Age. In 1939, Einstein signed a letter urging President Franklin D. Roosevelt to support American research of "extremely powerful bombs of a new type" that could compete with the threat of Germany’s nuclear weapons program. Roosevelt authorized the Manhattan Project, which created the bombs that were dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki.
General Leslie Groves was a University of Washington student before attending West Point. Groves was assigned to the Manhattan Project in September of 1942 with a $2 billion budget and limitless mind power for the project. His work was given the highest security clearance and in effect, he could ask for any resources. In less than three years, Groves had two effective atomic bombs to show for his efforts. When the Manhattan Project finished building the first atomic bombs, Groves retired from military service. He served as vice president for the Sperry Rand Corporation, which specialized in wartime technologies. Groves published a book about the Manhattan Project in 1962, entitled Now It Can Be Told.
J. Robert Oppenheimer
J. Robert Oppenheimer (April 22, 1904 - February 18, 1967) was an American theoretical physicist, best known for his role as the director of the Manhattan Project, the World War II effort to develop the first nuclear weapons. Known as "the father of the atomic bomb," Oppenheimer was shocked by the weapon's killing power after it was used to destroy the Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki.