Fall 2017-Summer 2018
Arts & Humanities
Bend, Salvatella de Prada Collaboration Receives Recognition
Torry Bend (Theater Studies) and Racquel Salvatella de Prada (Art, Art History & Visual Studies) were awarded a Citation of Excellence in the Art of Puppetry for their collaboration, “The Paper Hat Game.” The production is based on the true story of Scotty Iseri, the Paper Hat Guy of Chicago. The citation was presented by the American Center of the Union Internationale de la Marionnette (UNIMA-USA). Founded in 1929, UNIMA-USA is dedicated to promote international understanding and friendship through the art of puppetry.
Boatwright Elected President of Society for Classical Studies
Mary “Tolly” Boatwright (Classical Studies) was selected as President-Elect of the Society for Classical Studies (SCS), beginning January 2019. The SCS, founded in 1869, is the principal learned society in North America for the study of ancient Greek and Roman languages, literatures, and civilizations.
DeFrantz Honored for Dance Scholarship
Thomas F. DeFrantz (Dance; Theater Studies; African & African American Studies; Gender, Sexuality & Feminist Studies) has won the 2017 Award for Outstanding Scholarly Research in Dance from the Congress on Research in Dance (CORD). The award recognizes an exceptional scholar for sustained contributions to dance research. In making the announcement, the awards committee noted DeFrantz has contributed substantially to understanding of aesthetics and race politics and has inspired a reevaluation of race and dance history.
Hassan Receives Excellence Award for Book
Mona Hassan (Religious Studies; History; Gender, Sexuality & Feminist Studies) was presented a 2017 American Academy of Religion (AAR) Award for Excellence for her book “Longing for the Lost Caliphate: A Transregional History.” Hassan’s book — which delves into why the caliphate has been so important to Muslims in vastly different eras and places — won in the Historical Studies category. The AAR awards honor works of distinctive originality, intelligence, creativity, and importance; books that affect decisively how religion is examined, understood, and interpreted.
Russing Wins Two Top Prizes at Film Festival
Cole Russing (Arts of the Moving Image) won the Best Documentary and Judge’s Choice awards at the Asheville (N.C.) Film Festival for the documentary “Arthur, Meet Ruth: The Miraculous Journey of Arthur H. Kingberg.” The film tells the story of 92-year-old Kingberg, born in Frankfurt, Germany, whose childhood was overshadowed by the rise of Hitler’s party.
Tyson’s Book Receives National Accolades
Timothy Tyson (Documentary Studies) won the 2018 Robert F. Kennedy Book Award and was named a finalist (Top 10) for the National Book Foundation’s 2017 National Book Award for his work, “The Blood of Emmett Till.” The Kennedy book award, presented by the nonprofit advocacy organization Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights, gives the award to a book it feels most faithfully and forcefully reflects Robert Kennedy’s purpose. Tyson’s book reexamines the 1955 Mississippi lynching of a 14-year-old and that event’s impact on the civil rights movement.
Vadde Wins Levin Prize
Aarthi Vadde (English) won the Harry Levin Prize for the Best First Book in Comparative Literature, given by the American Comparative Literature Association. In her book “Chimeras of Form: Modernist Internationalism Beyond Europe, 1914-2016,” she illustrates how modernist and contemporary writers re-imagine the nation and internationalism in a period defined by globalization. She explains how Rabindranath Tagore, James Joyce, Claude McKay, George Lamming, Michael Ondaatje, and Zadie Smith use modernist literary forms to develop ideas of international belonging sensitive to the afterlife of an empire. In doing so, she shows how this wide-ranging group of authors challenged traditional expectations of aesthetic form, and shaped readers understanding of the cohesion and interrelation of political communities.
Banks Receives DeGroot Prize
David Banks (Statistical Science) and his coauthors were awarded the DeGroot Prize from the International Society for Bayesian Analysis for the book “Adversarial Risk Analysis.” Adversarial risk analysis (ARA), a relatively new area of research, informs decision making when there are intelligent opponents and uncertain outcomes. Banks’ research areas include models for dynamic networks, dynamic text networks, adversarial risk analysis (i.e., Bayesian behavioral game theory), human rights statistics, agent-based models, forensics, and certain topics in high-dimensional data analysis.
Berger Wins Zellner Medal
Jim Berger (Statistical Science) was awarded the Zellner Medal from the International Society of Bayesian Analysis (ISBA). The Zellner Medal recognizes ISBA members who have rendered exceptional and distinguished service to ISBA, and whose contributions have had an impact on the society beyond the time of his or her incumbency. Berger’s research has primarily been in Bayesian statistics, foundations of statistics, statistical decision theory, simulation, model selection, and various interdisciplinary areas of science and industry, including astronomy, geophysics, medicine, and validation of complex computer models.
Daubechies Wins Two Prestigious Awards
Ingrid Daubechies (Mathematics) became the first female recipient of the William Benter Prize in Applied Mathematics. This award recognizes outstanding mathematical contributions that have had a direct and fundamental impact on scientific, business, finance and engineering applications. She also received the 2018 Fudan-Zhongzhi Science Award, given in recognition of global scientists who have made fundamental and distinguished achievements in the fields of biomedicine, physics and mathematics. Daubechies’ work has ranged from wavelets and the compression of images to applied mathematical algorithms for recognizing art forgeries. She has worked to build global mathematics networks and provide better training for scientists and engineers in developing countries, and to encourage greater interest in mathematics among women.
Derbyshire Named Leader in Biochemistry, Wins Awards
Emily Derbyshire (Chemistry) was named one of 44 prominent scientists who are leading the field of biochemistry. She was profiled in the January 9, 2018 “The Future of Biochemistry,” a special issue of the journal Biochemistry. She was also named recipient of an American Chemical Society Infectious Diseases Young Investigator Award — for outstanding young researchers in the infectious disease field — and a 2017 National Institutes of Health (NIH) Director’s New Innovator Award — which helps fund innovative, high-impact research from exceptionally creative early career investigators. The award will support Derbyshire’s ongoing efforts to understand the early stages of Plasmodium infection in humans, a key starting point in the development of new antimalarial therapies for overcoming parasite drug resistance.
Natural Science Professors Named Fellows
The Institute of Mathematical Statistics (IMS) has named two Trinity professors as Fellows of the IMS, which elects fellows for their demonstrated distinction in research in statistics or probability.
Sayan Mukherjee (Statistical Science; Mathematics; Computer Science) received the award for significant contributions to mathematical statistics, including kernel methodology, distributions on manifolds, and inference for dynamical systems, and for extensive work in computational biology and genomics.
Peter Hoff (Statistical Science) received the award for sustained and important contributions to sparse, interval and spectral estimation, for applied work in the area of networks and for service to the IMS through editorial responsibilities.
Hoff was also selected as a Fellow of the American Statistical Association. The ASA selects up to one third of one percent of its members as fellows, in recognition of “outstanding contributions to statistical science.”
Chemistry Professors Receives Research Award
Amanda Hargrove (Chemistry) and Jennifer Roizen (Chemistry) have each received a Maximizing Investigator’s Research Award (MIRA) (R35). The goal of MIRA is to increase the efficiency of National Institute of General Medical Sciences (NIGMS) funding by providing investigators with greater stability and flexibility, thereby enhancing scientific productivity and the chances for important breakthroughs. Hargrove’s research under this award will aim to develop a diverse but uniquely RNA-targeted small molecule library along with effective general strategies for the targeting of disease-related RNA structures. Roizen’s research will enable chemists to harness a ubiquitous functional group, the alcohol, to replace a C–H bond at a site that is not generally accessible to direct functionalization, and is expected to streamline access to biologically under-evaluated health-relevant small molecules.
Lu Awarded IMA Prize
Jianfeng Lu (Mathematics; Chemistry; Physics) has received the 2017 IMA (Institute for Mathematics and its Applications) Prize. Lu received this recognition for his many contributions in applied analysis, computational mathematics, and applied probability, in particular for problems from physics, chemistry, and material sciences. The unique strength of his research is to combine advanced mathematical analysis and algorithmic tools with a deep understanding of problems from science and engineering. The IMA presents the annual award to a mathematical scientist who is within 10 years of having received his or her Ph.D.
Mitchell-Olds Named AAAS Fellow
Thomas Mitchell-Olds (Biology) was named Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). Election as a AAAS Fellow is an honor that recognize scientifically or socially distinguished efforts to advance science or its applications. Mitchell-Olds studies the natural genetic variation in rice and a wildflower called Boechera, asking questions about flowering time and elevation, insect resistance and drought resistance, and seeking the genes that affect ecological success and evolutionary fitness.
Pierce Wins Sloan Research Fellowship
Lillian Pierce (Mathematics) has been awarded a 2018 Sloan Research Fellowship. Open to early-career scholars in eight scientific and technical fields, the prestigious fellowships are awarded each year on the basis of a candidate’s research accomplishments, creativity, and potential to become a leader in her field. Pierce, whose research interests include analytic number theory, harmonic analysis and discrete operators, is among only 126 researchers receiving the 2018 award.
Randles Receives Grace Murray Hopper Award
Amanda Randles (Computer Science; Mathematics) has been named recipient of the 2017 Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) Grace Murray Hopper Award. The Microsoft-supported award is given to the outstanding young computer professional of the year, selected on the basis of a single recent major technical or service contribution. Randles is being recognized for developing HARVEY—a massively parallel fluid dynamics simulation capable of modeling the full human arterial system at subcellular resolution. The visionary program is already fostering discoveries that could improve the diagnosis, prevention and treatment of human diseases.
Trinity Faculty Win National Science Foundation Early Career Awards
Four faculty members won National Science Foundation (NSF) Faculty Early Career Development Program (CAREER) Awards. The CAREER award is NSF’s most prestigious award in support of the early career development for those who integrate research and education:
Pictured left to right
- Amanda Hargrove (Chemistry) seeks to make use of exquisitely tunable small molecules in order to develop time saving and simple technologies that illuminate critical principles in RNA recognition and related function.
- Li Ma (Statistical Science) seeks to develop statistical tools that address urgent needs for scalable nonparametric data analysis in a wide range of fields, including biology, economics, astrophysics, chemistry, and information technology.
- Debmalya Panigrahi (Computer Science) will explore fundamental problems in graph algorithms to identify solutions for core algorithmic challenges in modern networks: efficiency at scale, uncertainty and impreciseness of network requirements, and correlation effects.
- Galen Reeves (Statistical Science) will explore probabilistic models that describe the statistical relationship between the data and the unknown quantities of interest (e.g., transmitted message or correct label).
Rausher Elected Next President of the Society for the Study of Evolution
Mark Rausher (Biology) has been elected as the 2019 President of the Society for the Study of Evolution (SSE). SSE’s objectives are the promotion of the study of organic evolution and the integration of the various fields of science concerned with evolution. Mark’s research includes investigating the evolutionary processes that cause change at both the phenotypic and genetic levels.
Shaw Presented Biodiversity Award
Jon Shaw (Biology) has received a National Science Foundation (NSF) Dimensions of Biodiversity Award. The Dimensions of Biodiversity Program links functional, genetic and phylogenetic dimensions of biodiversity, offering opportunities to produce rapid advances in understanding the creation, maintenance and loss of biodiversity. Shaw’s project — “Genome structure and adaptive evolution in peatmosses (Sphagnum): ecosystem engineers” — will connect DNA variation in Sphagnum with specific plant traits and ultimately ecological functions of peatmoss. Understanding a humble moss better could help to solve giant problems of our climate.
Two Professors Named APS Fellows
Roxanne Springer (Physics) and Chris Walter (Physics) have been elected American Physical Society (APS) fellows. The criterion for election is exceptional contributions to the physics enterprise, and election is restricted to 0.5% of the membership in any given year. Springer was cited for significant contributions to understanding the low-energy properties of hadrons, nuclei, and especially for pioneering contributions to the use of low-energy effective field theory techniques in the quest to identify and understand the fundamental symmetries of nature. Walter was cited for experimental study of neutrino oscillation physics including the first observations of neutrino flavor appearance and the systematic study of neutrino flavor disappearance, using atmospheric and long-baseline neutrinos with the Super-Kamiokande, K2K, and T2K experiments.
Tokdar Wins Young Researcher Award
Surya Tokdar (Statistical Science) received the Young Researcher Award in Theory and Methods from the International Indian Statistical Association. The annual award is presented to an early career researcher in statistics, theoretical or applied, who has contributed significantly to the profession of statistics through collaboration and leadership.
Vossen Receives Department of Energy’s Early Career Award
Anselm Vossen (Physics) was selected to receive significant research funding as part of the Department of Energy’s Early Career Research Program. The effort, now in its ninth year, is designed to bolster the nation’s scientific workforce by providing support to exceptional researchers during the crucial early career years, when many scientists do their most formative work. Vossen was chosen for his work creating new tools to understand the fundamental forces that hold the nuclei of atoms together.
Warren Recognized by The Optical Society
Warren S. Warren (Chemistry; Physics) has received the 2018 William F. Meggers Award from The Optical Society. The Meggers award recognizes Warren’s pioneering development of “coherent” spectroscopic methods to investigate the properties of matter at small scales. Spectroscopy uses highly controlled light, such as tailored laser pulses less than a trillionth of a second long, or complex pulse sequences. Warren’s work bridges two quite different domains, magnetic resonance (where he works to improve the sensitivity of MRI machines) and coherent optics (where his lab develops methods to extract new molecular information about cancerous tissue such as melanoma).
Yoder Receives Guggenheim Fellowship
Anne Yoder (Biology) has been awarded a 2018 Guggenheim Fellowship by the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation. With the fellowship, Yoder will pursue a sabbatical project entitled “Building and Saving Trees in Madagascar.” Using a field laboratory in a relatively unspoiled dry forest in northwestern Madagascar, she hopes to better understand speciation in mouse lemurs and build a better “family tree” for the animals.
Bail Receives Guggenheim Fellowship
Christopher Bail (Sociology) has been awarded a 2018 Guggenheim Fellowship by the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation. Bail will use the six months of support provided by the fellowship conducting a study designed to disrupt social media ‘echo chambers.’ His research, which looks at how nonprofit organization and others shape public opinion about controversial social issues, examines how organizations use digital platforms to reach new and broaden existing audiences.
Balleisen Honored by Business History Conference
Ed Balleisen (History) won two Business History Conference (BHC) awards, and has been elected president of the BHC for the 2019-20 academic year. He was awarded the Harold F. Williamson Award for significant contributions to the field of business history. He also received the annual Ralph Gomory Book Prize in recognition of historical work on the effects of business enterprises on the economic conditions of the countries in which they operate. His book, “Fraud: An American History from Barnum to Madoff,” traces the history of fraud in America and the evolving efforts to combat it. The BHC, an international organization of scholars, fosters research and teaching about business history and the environments in which businesses operate.
Glymph To Lead Southern Historical Association
Thavolia Glymph (African & African American Studies; History) has been selected to serve as the 86th President of the Southern Historical Association (SHA). Thavolia — a historian of the 19th century U.S. South specializing in gender and women’s history, slavery, emancipation, the Civil War, and Reconstruction — will begin her term in 2020 when she delivers the presidential address at the organization’s annual meeting in Memphis. The SHA’s objectives are the promotion of interest and research in southern history, the collection and preservation of the South’s historical records, and the encouragement of state and local historical society in the South.
Hotz Elected Fellow of the Society of Labor Economists
V. Joseph Hotz (Economics) was elected a fellow of the Society of Labor Economists. Hotz was recognized for his “unusually distinctive” research contributions, and is one of only two faculty members elected to the society in 2018. He specializes in applied econometrics, labor economics, economic demography, and economics of the family. His research explores topics ranging from the impacts of social programs such as welfare-to-work training; to the relationship between childbearing patterns and labor force participation of U.S. women; and the Earned Income Tax Credit.
Johnston Wins David O. Sears Book Award
Christopher Johnston (Political Science) and his coauthors won the 2018 David O. Sears Book Award from the International Society of Political Psychology for their work, “Open versus Closed: Personality, Identity, and the Politics of Redistribution.” This award is given to work that demonstrates the highest quality of thought and makes a major substantive contribution to the field of political psychology. Johnston’s work discusses why some citizens prefer a large role for government in the economic life of the nation while others wish to limit its reach — and how these preferences are not always what they seem.
McClain Elected APSA President
Paula D. McClain (Political Science) has been elected as the next president of the American Political Science Association (APSA), the most prestigious academic organization in the discipline. She will serve as president-elect for a year in 2018-2019 before taking the reins as president for 2019-2020. McClain’s primary research interests are in racial minority group politics, particularly inter-minority political and social competition, and urban politics. She has published articles in numerous journals, including the American Political Science Review and the Journal of Politics, written three books and a monograph, and edited two books and two encyclopedias.
MacLean’s Book Garners National Accolades
Nancy MacLean (History) has received multiple prizes for her book “Democracy in Chains: The Deep History of the Radical Right’s Stealth Plan for America.” The book — designated as a finalist for the National Book Award from the National Book Foundation — won the 38th annual Los Angeles Times Book Award in the Current Interest category; the Lannan Foundation Cultural Freedom Award; and was called the Most Valuable Book of 2017 in The Nation’s 2017 Progressive Honor Roll. The book focuses on the intellectual history of American politics since the late 1950s and traces how economist James Buchanan’s ideas came to guide a right-wing movement funded by the billionaire Charles Koch and his fellow donors.
Olcott’s Book Receives Honorable Mention
Jocelyn Olcott’s (History; Gender, Sexuality & Feminist Studies) book “International Women’s Year: The Greatest Consciousness-Raising Event in History” has been awarded honorable mention by the 2018 Bryce Wood Book Award Committee of the Latin American Studies Association. The Bryce Wood Book Awards recognize outstanding social science and humanities works focused on Latin America. Books are judged on the quality of the research, analysis, and writing, and the significance of their contribution to Latin American studies.
Solomon Wins New Millennium Book Award
Harris Solomon (Cultural Anthropology) received the New Millennium Book Award for his book “Metabolic Living: Food, Fat, and the Absorption of Illness in India.” The award, presented by the Society for Medical Anthropology, recognizes authors whose work is “judged to be the most significant and potentially influential contribution to medical anthropology in recent years.” Harris’ book studies obesity and diabetes in Mumbai, India, presenting a new narrative of metabolic illness in which it is less about the overconsumption of food than it is about the body’s relationship to its environment and the substances it absorbs.