Skip to main content
Northwestern University

Academic Honors

2016-2017 Academic Year

Winter Quarter

Omar Farha, a professor of chemistry, has won the 2017 Pittcon Separation Science Award for his work on gas storage.

Kenneth R. Poppelmeier, a professor of chemistry, has been elected a foreign member of the Royal Spanish Academy of Sciences. Poppelmeier will travel to Madrid to speak before the Academy in May 2017.

Bill Halperin and Jim Sauls, both professors of physics, have been awarded the Fritz London Memorial Prize for 2017. They share this prize with another researcher, Jeevak Parpia of Cornell University. The London Prize recognizes major contributions to the field of low-temperature physics. Over the years, 12 of the award’s 22 recipients have also received Nobel Prizes. Halperin and Sauls have been recognized for their pioneering work on the influence of disorder on the superfluidity of helium-3 (an isotope of helium that exhibits unique properties at very low temperatures).  

Anthropology professor Mary Weismantel has been awarded an ACLS Fellowship for her project “An Archaeology of Sex: The Moche Sex Pots.”

E. Patrick Johnson, a professor of African American studies and performance studies, is one of the inaugural recipients of the Provost’s Award for Faculty Excellence in Diversity and Equity.

Mathematicians Gang Liu and Yifeng Liu and neurobiologist Tiffany Schmidt have each been awarded a prestigious 2017 Sloan Research Fellowship from the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation. They are among 126 outstanding early-career scholars being recognized for their achievements and potential to contribute substantially to their scientific fields.

Physicist Eric Dahl and chemists Danna Freedman and T. David Harris and have been awarded the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers (PECASE), as announced by President Barack Obama. The PECASE is the highest honor bestowed by the United States government on science and engineering professionals in the early stages of their independent research careers.

Mathematics professor Valentino Tosatti has won an appointment next year to the Poincare Chair at the Institut Henri Poincare in Paris, France.

Chad Mirkin, the George B. Rathmann Professor of Chemistry and director of the International Institute for Nanotechnology, has won the 2016 Dickson Prize in Science.

Thomas J. Meade, a professor of chemistry, has been named a 2017 Fellow of the National Academy of Inventors (NAI). Election to NAI Fellow status is a high professional distinction accorded to academic inventors who have demonstrated a prolific spirit of innovation in creating or facilitating outstanding inventions that have made a tangible impact on quality of life, economic development and the welfare of society.

Four faculty of the College have been honored with National Endowment for the Humanities fellowships — a record-setting number for Northwestern in recent history. The recipients are:

Jeffrey Masten, a professor of English and gender and sexuality studies, who received a fellowship to continue his research on Christopher Marlowe for a scholarly edition of Marlowe’s “Edward II.”  

Loubna El Amine, an assistant professor in the Department of Political Science, who will continue research for a new book, tentatively titled “The Foundations of Confucian Political Thought: History, Law, and the Political Community,” which will endeavor to delineate the early Confucian conception of the political community. 

Haydon Cherry, an assistant professor in the Department of History, who will continue work on an intellectual biography of Dao Duy Anh (1904-1988), arguably the most important Vietnamese scholar and intellectual of the 20th century.

Rachel Zuckert, who teaches philosophy of art and German philosophy, will write a book on the aesthetic theory of Johann Gottfried Herder (1744-1803), a canonical figure in the German literary and philosophical traditions

Wendy Pearlman, associate professor of political science and core faculty member of the Middle East and North African Studies Program, was commended by the Syrian Studies Association, winning the 2016 prize for Outstanding Article on Syria for her article “Narratives of Fear in Syria” (published in the journal Perspectives on Politics, Volume 14, Issue 1, March 2016). 

Fall Quarter

Professor Laura DeMarco has been named the winner of the American Mathematical Society’s 2017 Ruth Lyttle Satter Prize in Mathematics. DeMarco is honored "for her fundamental contributions to complex dynamics, potential theory, and the emerging field of arithmetic dynamics."

Bryna Kra, the Sarah Rebecca Roland Professor of Mathematics and Michael R. Wasielewski, the Clare Hamilton Hall Professor of Chemistry have been elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.

Nanoscientist Chad A. Mirkin has been awarded the 2016 RUSNANOPRIZE for his invention of spherical nucleic acids. The RUSNANOPRIZE is awarded to “scientists and researchers being authors of scientific and/or technological discovery in the field of nanotechnology.”

The American Chemical Society has awarded Professor Richard Silverman the 2017 Award for Creative Invention. Silverman pioneered the drug Lyrica, which is used for treating fibromyalgia, epilepsy and other conditions.

Professor Adilson Motter has been awarded a Scialog Collaborative Innovation Award. Motter will work with systems biologist Kimberly Reynolds at the University of Texas-Southwestern to determine if the order in which genes are “knocked out” (deleted) from an organism has any influence on its resulting condition.

Assistant professor Katherine Amato has been named a member of the new Canadian Institute for Advanced Research Azrieli Global Scholars Program. Membership recognizes exceptional early-career investigators and provides $100,000 in research support as well as specialized leadership development programs.

Mercouri Kanatzidis, the Charles E. and Emma H. Morrison Professor of Chemistry, has been named the co-winner of the Eric and Sheila Samson Prize for his innovative scientific contributions to alternative fuel development. The prize is the world’s largest monetary honor in the field of alternative fuels. Kanatzidis will split the $1 million award with co-winner Gregory Stephanopoulos from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Sir Fraser Stoddart, the Board of Trustees Professor of Chemistry, has won the 2016 Nobel Prize in Chemistry. Stoddart shares the award with Jean-Pierre Sauvage of the University of Strasbourg in France and Bernard L. Feringa of the University of Groningen in the Netherlands. 

Seth Stein, the William Deering Professor in the Department of Earth & Planetary Sciences, has been elected president of the American Geophysical Union's Natural Hazards Focus group.

Psychology professor William Revelle (along with his wife, Eleanor) has been honored by the Bulletin of Atomic Scientists for their advocacy work on the subject of climate change.

Nathalie Bouzaglo, assistant professor in the Department of Spanish and Portuguese, received the 2016 Fernando Coronil Book Award from the Latin American Studies Association for her book Ficción adulterada: pasiones ilícitas del entresiglo venezolano.

Alejandra Uslenghi, assistant professor in the Department of Spanish and Portuguese, received an honorable mention from the Latin American Studies Association, Section Cono Sur for her book Latin America at Fin-de-Siècle Universal Exhibitions: Modern Cultures of Visuality.

Laura Leon Llerena, assistant professor of Spanish and Portuguese, has won two prestigious awards for her project “Restoring the Illegible: Unexpected Indigenous Uses of Writing in Early Colonial Peru.” She spent the 2016 fall quarter as a fellow at the John Carter Brown Library, and will spend the 2017 winter and spring quarters at the Dahlem Humanities Center at the Freie Universitat in Berlin with the support of an Andrew Mellon Foundation-Volkswagen Stiftung research fellowship.

Professors Elad Harel and Nathaniel Stern have been selected to receive the prestigious 2016 Young Investigator Awards from the Office of Naval Research. They are two of 47 scientists from across the nation honored this year by the ONR for their exceptionally creative research.

Professor Catherine Woolley and Assistant Professor Tiffany Schmidt are both recipients of the NIH Common Fund's 2016 High-Risk, High-Reward Research Awards.  The program, supported by the National Institutes of Health’s Common Fund, awarded a total of 88 grants to scientists with bold approaches to major challenges in biomedical research.  Professors Woolley and Schmidt were awarded the Transformative Research Award and New Innovator Award, respectively.

Professor Aldon Morris has been named a co-winner of the Association for Humanist Sociology’s 2016 Betty and Alfred McClung Lee Book Award for his book, The Scholar Denied. Earlier this year, the PROSE Awards bestowed the prestigious R.R. Hawkins Award on Morris for the book as well.

Back to top