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Sigma Xi Members in the News for June 2008

George Timothy Flowers (SX 1987) has been named dean of the Graduate School at Auburn University.

Joseph M. DeSimone (SX 1986) has won the Massachusetts Institute of Technology's 2008 Lemelson Prize. DeSimone is a chemistry professor at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and also teaches chemical engineering at N.C. State University. In the past five years, most of his work in the field of polymers has focused on medical devices. That includes a stent that keeps blocked arteries open and then dissolves to prevent scarring, and bacteria-shaped vessels that can slip inside tumor cells to deliver therapeutic drugs.

David Morton (SX 2008), professor of integrative biosciences, recently received the "Outstanding Researcher Award" in the biological sciences from the Columbia-Willamette Chapter of Sigma Xi. He also just received a one-year, $40,000 grant from the Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis Association to study a fruit fly gene that is related to a human gene associated with ALS. Morton and his team have discovered how to alter the fruit fly gene so that it suffers from neurodegeneration.

Mary Elizabeth Savina (SX 1972) has been named the the Charles L. Denison Professor of Geology at Carleton College. She joined the faculty there in 1978, after receiving her M.A. and Ph.D. from the University of California, Berkeley. Savina has served as a Sigma Xi Distinguished Lecturer.

Tuskegee University College of Veterinary Medicine, Nursing and Allied Health honored and bid farewell to long-time faculty member Irtaza Siddique (SX 1975) with a retirement reception on May 29, his official last day. Siddique is a former professor of microbiology and public health and spent more than half a century serving the veterinary medical profession.

Vickie S. Baselski (SX 1981) and James T. Staley (SX 1997) have been awarded 2008 American Society for Microbiology Scientific Achievement Awards. A professor at the University of Tennessee, Baselski received the ASM's TREK Diagnostic ABMM/ABMLI Professional Recognition Award. Staley received the ASM's Roger Porter Award; he is founding director of the Astrobiology Program and a professor of microbiology at the University of Washington, Seattle.

Jack P. Strong (SX 1984), Boyd Professor and chairman of pathology at LSU Health Sciences Center New Orleans, is one of five foreign nationals in the U.S. and 15 worldwide chosen to receive the Order of the Rising Sun, Gold Rays with Neck Ribbon from His Majesty the Emperor of Japan. The decoration recognizes Strong's outstanding contributions to academic and cultural exchanges between Japan and the U.S.

Sigma Xi Members in the News for May 2008

Kehai Li (SX 2006) of Florence, South Carolina, has been awarded the Henry Granjon Prize at an annual international competition sponsored by the International Institute of Welding for papers devoted to research into welding technology.

Donald C. Richardson (SX 1984) at the Florida Institute of Technology has been appointed to the Howard Hughes Medical Institute Visiting Professorship Symbiosis position, integrating mathematics, numerical analysis and computer science into an advanced biology curriculum for East Tennessee State University.

Timothy J. Greene (SX 1985), dean of the College of Engineering and Applied Science at Western Michigan University, has been appointed provost and vice president for academic affairs there.

Mary Lynne Dittmar (SX 1984) of Dittmar Associates Inc. in Houston, Texas, has been appointed to the newly-created position of vice president of strategic communications and outreach at the American Astronautical Society.

Mary L. Searing (SX 2003) has been named division manager and water resources service director for the Maryland-based engineering consulting firm Greenhorne & O'Mara. She will be responsible for strategic business development and will also provide technical leadership for a full range of water resources projects throughout all of the firm's geographic regions.

Shah N. Malik (SX 1973) of Vancouver, Washington, has received the American Pharmacists Association's 2008 Academy of Pharmacy Practice and Management Distinguished Achievement Award in Community and Ambulatory Practice. The award recognizes his work to develop pharmacy-based immunization programs on the national and regional levels.

Joseph M. Martel (SX 2008), a mechanical engineering student at Union College, has received the Edward H. Williams, Jr. Fellowship for 2008-09 from Tau Beta Pi, the engineering honor society. The society's graduate fellowships are awarded on the basis of high scholarship, campus leadership and service, and promise of future contributions to the engineering profession. The Williams Fellowship is given to a winner who plans to earn a doctoral degree and become a professional engineering teacher.

David Harold Peyton (SX 1988) and Christina L. Hulbe (SX 2002) were among six Portland State Univeristy professors to receive the Outstanding Scientific Research Award based on publications, presentations and research significance. Peyton also received a unique award entitled "Research on a Shoestring," for conducting significant research without large amounts of funding.

Jandy B. Hanna (SX 2001), a faculty member at the West Virginia School of Osteopathic Medicine, was in the news recently for work she did while a Duke University graduate student. Her study, supported by a Sigma Xi Grant-in-Aid of Research, found that smaller primates expend no more energy climbing than they do walking, which may explain the evolutionary edge that encouraged the tiny ancestors of modern humans, apes and monkeys to climb into the trees about 65 million years ago and stay there.

Seventeen Sigma Xi Members Elected to National Academy
Seventeen of the 72 new members and 18 foreign associates elected this spring to the National Academy of Sciences are Sigma Xi members. They were elected in recognition of their distinguished and continuing achievements in original research. Newly elected members and their affiliations at the time of election are:

Thomas D. Albright (SX 1982), professor and director, vision center laboratory, Salk Institute for Biological Studies, San Diego.

Richard B. Alley (SX 1983), Evan Pugh Professor of Geosciences, department of geosciences and Earth and Environmental Systems Institute, Pennsylvania State University, University Park.

Edward A. Boyle (SX 1976), professor of ocean geochemistry, department of earth, atmospheric, and planetary sciences, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge.

Stephen L. Buchwald (SX 1977), Camille Dreyfus Professor of Chemistry, department of chemistry, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge.

Emily A. Carter (SX 1984), Arthur W. Marks '19 Professor, department of mechanical and aerospace engineering, Princeton University, Princeton, N.J.

Michael E. Greenberg (SX 1977), professor, departments of neurology and neurobiology, Harvard Medical School, and director, division of neuroscience, Children's Hospital, Boston.

David M. Hillis (SX 1987), director, center for computational biology and bioinformatics, and Roark Centennial Professor, University of Texas, Austin.

Evelyn L. Hu (SX 1976), professor, electrical and computer engineering department, University of California, Santa Barbara.

Frank T. Leighton (SX 1978), professor of applied mathematics, department of mathematics, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge.

Thomas M. Liggett (SX 1965), professor, department of mathematics, University of California, Los Angeles.

Claire E. Max (SX 1972), professor, astronomer and director, center for adaptive optics, University of California, Santa Cruz.

Paul E. Olsen (SX 1978), Arthur D. Storke Memorial Professor, department of earth and environmental sciences, Columbia University, Palisades, N.Y.

Johanna Schmitt (SX 1982), Stephen T. Olney Professor of Natural History, department of ecology and evolutionary biology, Brown University, Providence, R.I.

George Smoot (SX 1966), professor and research scientist, department of physics and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, University of California, Berkeley.

Jack L. Wisdom (SX 1981), professor of planetary sciences, department of earth, atmospheric, and planetary sciences, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge

Newly elected NAS foreign associates, their affiliations at the time of election, and their country of citizenship included:

Rosemary B. Grant (SX 1998), research scholar, department of ecology and evolutionary biology, Princeton University, Princeton, N.J. (United Kingdom).

Luis R. Rodriguez (SX 1976), professor of astronomy, Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico, Michoacan (Mexico).


A study by Tom Delton Dillehay (SX 1975) in the Department of Anthropology at Vanderbilt University, about the people living in the earliest known settlement in the Americas, was recently featured by National Geographic News.

Christopher R. Brodie (SX 2004), a former associate editor at American Scientist, has been named vice president of corporate communications at the North Carolina Biotechnology Center.

H. Holden Thorp (SX 2004) has been named chancellor at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Thorp is a former chair of Sigma Xi's Public Understanding of Science Committee.

Richard Charles McCarty (SX 1992) has been appointed provost at Vanderbilt University.

Life Member Gertrude Neumark Rothschild (SX 1950), a professor emeritus at Columbia University, was featured in the April 10 issue of Nature. The 80-year-old physicist is suing 30 large electronics companies for infringing on her 1993 patent on wide-band semiconductors. She says she filed the complaint to raise awareness of women's role in science.

Life Member Nancy L. Haigwood (SX 1979) has been appointed the fifth director of the Oregon National Primate Research Center, one of the eight national centers in the U.S. and the first primate center to be established.

Harold Arthur Geller (SX 2006) has been named Faculty Member of the Year by the George Mason University Alumni Association, recognizing and honoring his achievements and contributions to the university.

Pamela C. Ebert-Flattau (SX 1972) of Washington, D.C., has been elected a member of the Committee on International Relations in Psychology of the American Psychological Association.

Noemi Graciela Mirkin (SX 1991) in the Biophysics Research Division at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor has been elected a Fellow of the American Physical Society.

Martin E. Gordon (SX 1964) of St. Louis, Missouri, has received the Yale University Honoris Causa International Health Fellowship Award in recognition of his exceptional service and support of the Wilbur Downs International Health Student Travel Fellows.

Sigma Xi Members in the News for April 2008

Vicki S. Thompson (SX 1992), a chemical engineer at the Idaho National Laboratory, was featured in an Associated Press article for her work with other researchers over the past 10 years to successfully develop a human identification test that's faster than DNA testing and would serve as a new weapon in the arsenal for detectives, forensic experts and the military.

Dawn Neuman (SX 1988) has been appointed provost and vice president for academic affairs at California State University Channel Islands.

George Adeeb Khoury (SX 2007) has been selected to receive a Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship. He was also elected student government president of the Council of Commonwealth Student Governments at Penn State.

Gerald W. Intemann (SX 1964) has been named provost and vice president for academic affairs at Indiana University of Pennsylvania.

Donald B. Taylor (SX 1989) has been named provost and vice president for academic affairs at Benedictine University.

Edythe E. Kirk (SX 1997) in the Department of Psychology at Lamar University in Beaumont, Texas, has been selected as one of four faculty members to receive the university's 2008 Merit Award for outstanding commitment to education.

Lee Merriam Talbot (SX 1974) of McLean, Virginia, has received the University of California's 2008 Excellence in Achievement Award for pioneering work in developing ecosystem science, shaping national and international environmental policies and principles, establishing an ecosystem basis for conservation and conducting environmental work in 131 countries.

John A. Orr (SX 1979) in the Division of Academic Affairs at Worcester Polytechnic Institute has been appointed provost and senior vice president there.

Manu Lopus (SX 2008) in the Department of Molecular/Cellular and Developmental Biology at the University of California-Santa Barbara has been elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Medicine in the United Kingdom.

Melissa Lee Kopp (SX 2007) of Rouses Point, New York; Amber Rose LaChapelle (SX 2007) of Plainville, Connecticut; and Christopher Michael Morales (SX 2006) of Altona, New York, have been awarded the SUNY-Plattsburgh Chancellor's Award for Student Excellence, which recognizes their well-rounded success, combining excellence in academics with excellence in athletics, leadership, career achievement, community service or creative and performing arts.

Charles E. Carraher, Jr. (SX 1970) at Florida Atlantic University has joined the board of advisors at BioSolar(TM), Inc. where he will provide leadership in the development of the company's current and next generation of polymers being readied for the marketplace.

Donald Robert Bobbitt (SX 1986) has been named provost and vice president for academic affairs at the University of Texas at Arlington.

Thomas A. Gorell (SX 1969) has been named vice president of administrative services at Colorado State University.

Send items for Sigma Xi Members in the News to Charles Blackburn at cblackburn@sigmaxi.org

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