News: AAAS 2011 Annual Meeting News
AAAS Names Winners of Prestigious Awards in Research, Education, Science Diplomacy, and Public Engagement
AAAS tonight named the winners of eight awards in the fields of research, science diplomacy, education, and public service, citing the winners’ deep commitment to discovery and positive contributions to a better world. The prestigious awards were announced on the eve of the 177th AAAS Annual Meeting and will be celebrated during the events in this week in Washington, D.C.
The 2010 winners:
Scientific Freedom and Responsibility Award: Elizabeth Loftus of the University of California at Irvine. Loftus was honored for “false memory” research that focused on eyewitness accounts of crimes; the research demonstrated that, rather than being fixed, memories are fragile, suggestible, and malleable over time. The findings have had a “profound impact on the administration of justice in the United States and abroad,” the award committee said.
Loftus serves as distinguished professor of social ecology,
and professor of law and cognitive science at UC Irvine.
Newcomb Cleveland Prize: A draft sequence of the Neandertal genome, described in a Science paper by Richard E. Green, David Reich, Svante Paabo, and colleagues, won the 2010 prize. The sequence was based on more than 4 billion nucleotide drawn from a 38,000-year-old bone fragment.
Now supported by Affymetrix, the Newcomb Cleveland Prize annually recognizes the author or authors of an outstanding paper published in the Research Articles or Reports sections of Science between June and the following May.
Science Diplomacy Award: Glenn E. Schweitzer won the award for his tireless advocacy for international science cooperation and the role of science in foreign relations. Specifically, Schweitzer is being honored for efforts dating to the 1960s to engage Russian colleagues through science diplomacy, and for efforts since the late 1990s to engage Iranian science.
Between 1985 and 1992, and since 1994, Schweitzer has served as director of U.S. National Academies’ Office for Central
Europe and Eurasia. Schweitzer since 2009 has also been a senior research fellow
(nonresident) at the Center for Sustainable Energy, Environment and
Economic Development at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill.
Goddard is an assistant professor of chemical and electrical engineering at the University of Illinois and also mentors students from underrepresented groups.
Public Understanding of Science and Technology Award: J. John Cohen, University of Colorado School of Medicine, was honored for his outstanding achievements in demystifying science for non-scientists with public programs that range from free lectures on science and medicine and informal discussions with pioneering scientists to a juried art exhibition.
Lifetime Mentor Award: Dr. Joel D. Oppenheim, New York University School of Medicine, won the award for “for his extraordinary leadership to increase the numbers of African and Hispanic Americans in the Ph.D. biomedical workforce.” Specifically, he was cited for his work with the NYU School of Medicine’s highly competitive Summer Undergraduate Program, his oversight of his institution’s doctoral programs, and efforts to improve the quality of life and educational experiences of postdoctoral fellows, among other initiatives.
Oppenheim serves as the senior associate dean for biomedical science and professor of microbiology at NYU.
Mentor Award: Joseph M. DeSimone, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and North Carolina State University, won the award for dedication to advancing the diversity of doctoral-level chemists entering the workforce. DeSimone has mentored at least nine African American students, one Hispanic American student, and 24 women through the completion of their Ph.D. degrees in chemistry.
He serves as both the Chancellor’s Eminent Professor of Chemistry at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and as the William R. Kenan Jr. Distinguished Professor of Chemical Engineering at North Carolina State University.
Philip Hauge Abelson Award: U.S. Representative Rush Holt of New Jersey, a physicist, was named the winner for “his strong and sustained support of science and engineering and their responsible use in addressing major societal concerns, both as a scientist and as a leading member of Congress.”
AAAS Chief Executive Officer Alan I. Leshner, executive publisher of Science, said: “Representative Holt is a recognized leader in Congress on science and technology issues and has been tireless in his efforts to convey to his fellow legislators and the general public a better understanding of what scientists and engineers do and how science and technology will contribute to national economic growth and security.”
The Abelson Award was inspired by Philip Hauge Abelson, who served as long-time senior advisor to AAAS and editor of the journal Science before his death in 2004.
Joshua E. Neimark Memorial Travel Assistance Endowment: The award went to four scholars who will present research posters at the AAAS Annual Meeting. They are:
- Andreina Parisi-Amon, Department of Bioengineering, Stanford University, for work related to stem cell transplantation;
- William Burnside, Department of Biology, University of New Mexico, for work on sustainable fisheries management;
- Diane Yu Gu,
Department of Higher Education and Organizational Change in the Graduate School
of Education and Information Studies, University of California, Los Angeles, on
how interactions with faculty members might influence the goals and experiences
of women students; and
- Jesse Hastings, Nicholas School of the Environment and Earth Sciences, Duke University, for his study of international environmental NGOs.
[Learn more about the AAAS awards.]
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