Three Named AAAS Fellows
From left: James Alfano, Michael Nastasi and L. Dennis Smith
James Alfano, Michael Nastasi and L. Dennis Smith were named American Association for the Advancement of Science Fellows in 2012. Alfano, Charles Bessey Professor of Plant Pathology, was recognized for notable research on plant pathogens. Nastasi, Elmer Koch Professor of Mechanical and Materials Engineering and director of the Nebraska Center for Energy Sciences Research, was honored for contributions in energy, manufacturing, nanotechnology and microelectronics. Smith, University of Nebraska president emeritus and School of Biological Sciences professor emeritus, was recognized for his work in developmental biology and education advocacy.
National Academy of Inventors Fellows Include Three from UNL
Brian Larkins, Prem S. Paul and James Van Etten
The charter class of National Academy of Inventors Fellows includes Brian Larkins, Prem S. Paul and James Van Etten. The distinction is a high honor for academics whose inventions have impacted quality of life, economic development and the welfare of society. Larkins, associate vice chancellor for life sciences and the John F. Davidson, Ph.D., and Marian J. Fuller, Ph.D., Chair in Life Sciences, is internationally known for contributions to plant molecular biology and plant agricultural biotechnology. Paul, vice chancellor for research and economic development, has extensively researched viral pathogenesis and holds 21 patents on methods for protection against swine viruses. Van Etten, William B. Allington Distinguished Professor of Plant Pathology and co-director of the Nebraska Center for Virology, has expanded understanding of the evolution of genes and genomes through his work isolating and characterizing icosahedral, dsDNA-containing viruses that infect certain green algae.
- The Fulbright Program provided UNL scholars opportunities to expand teaching and research. Karen Kunc, Willa Cather Professor of Art, received a project specialist grant to teach a contemporary woodcut printmaking workshop at Dhaka University, Bangladesh, in spring 2013. Gregory Rutledge, associate professor of English and ethnic studies, is spending a year in South Korea studying the historical and cultural links between African-Americans and Koreans. Alison Stewart, professor of art history, will conduct research at the University of Trier, Germany, in spring 2014 for her book on the 16th-century painter and printmaker Sebald Beham.
- UNL mathematicians joined the American Mathematical Society’s inaugural class of Fellows: Luchezar Avramov, Dale M. Jensen Chair in Mathematics; Jim Lewis, Aaron Douglas Professor of Mathematics and director of the Center for Science, Mathematics and Computer Education; Judy Walker, Aaron Douglas Professor; and Roger Wiegand and Sylvia Wiegand, professors emeriti of mathematics. David Manderscheid, former College of Arts and Sciences dean, also is a Fellow.
- Wendy Katz, associate professor of art and art history, received a 2013 Smithsonian Senior Fellowship to research her new book, The Politics of Art Criticism in the Penny Press, 1833-1861, which will delve into how critics’ political and economic agendas influenced their points of view.
- Matthew Dwyer, Henson Professor of Computer Science and Engineering, was named an Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Fellow in recognition of his often-cited research on software dependability, particularly methods for assuring correct operation of software used in transportation.
- John Woollam, George Holmes Professor of Electrical Engineering, won the 2013 Prize for Industrial Application of Physics from the American Physical Society. The honor recognizes excellence in the industrial application of physics and research. Woollam is founder of J.A. Woollam Co., a global leader in ellipsometry.
- Alan Kamil, George Holmes Professor of Biological Sciences and Psychology, received the Comparative Cognition Society’s Research Award for his 40 years of work to understand animals’ cognitive abilities in the context of their natural history.
- The American Society of Plant Biologists honored three UNL plant scientists in 2013. Brian Larkins, associate vice chancellor for life sciences and the John F. Davidson, Ph.D., and Marian J. Fuller, Ph.D., Chair in Life Sciences, won the Stephen Hale Prize for groundbreaking work in bringing together molecular biology and plant studies, leading to important discoveries in seed development. Sally Mackenzie, Othmer/Raikes Distinguished Chair of Agronomy, and Ray Chollet, emeritus professor of biochemistry, were named ASPB Fellows.
- Anne Duncan, associate professor of classics and religious studies, was awarded a Solmsen Fellowship from the University of Wisconsin-Madison Institute for Research in the Humanities. Duncan will spend a year at UW working on her book, Command Performance: Tyranny and Theater in the Classical World, about the connections between absolute rule and tragic drama in ancient Greece and Rome.
- Joseph Turner, Robert W. Brightfelt Professor of Mechanical and Materials Engineering, received a Friedrich Wilhelm Bessel Research Award from the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation. The award enables Turner to expand UNL’s international reach through a research collaboration with Konrad Samwar of the University of Göettingen, Germany. They will examine the application of contact resonance atomic force microscopy and nanoscale mapping of the properties of bulk metallic glasses.
- “Homesteading on the Prairie,” an essay by Richard Edwards, economics professor and director of UNL’s Center for Great Plains Studies, was included in a historical portfolio that Congress presented to President Barack Obama at his second presidential inauguration. The volume showcased 2013 as the 150th anniversary of significant legislation and events. Edwards was invited to write about the Homestead Act, which took effect Jan. 1, 1863.
- Kwame Dawes, Chancellor’s Professor of English and editor of Prairie Schooner, won The American Poetry Review’s Jerome J. Shestack Prize. The award recognizes the authors of the best poems published by the APR’s magazine during the past year. Dawes and fellow American poet Jorie Graham earned the honors as top 2012 contributors.