HONORS & Other Things

Some Awards Given....


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As she accepted the Drexel Medal (below) from Dr. Sabloff, Dr. de Laguna (left) made a presentation of her own--a late 19th-Century Tlingit bentwood box and two spoons.

Drexel Medal: Dr. de Laguna

Dr. Frederica de Laguna, the pioneering scholar of Alaskan cultures who undertook the first of her 13 expeditions for the University Museum almost 70 years ago, has been awarded the rarely-given Lucy Wharton Drexel Medal for archaeological achievement. She is the 26th recipient of the Medal since it was established in 1889 as the highest honor the Museum bestows on a scholar.

Dr. de Laguna, a member of the National Academy of Sciences and former president of the American Anthropological Association, has been honorary curator of the American section of the Museum since 1983. Her first expedition for the Museum, in 1930, was a groundbreaking archaeological and ethnographic survey of Prince William Sound and Cook Inlet, followed by intensive excavations that provided the foundation for the study of the prehistory of the region. In 16 books and over 100 articles she approached her work as "a dedicated, meticulous scholar, with deep sensitivities to her Native friends and teachers, and to her own students," said Dr. Jeremy Sabloff, the Museum's Williams Director, who presented the medal last month.

Pender Award: Dr. Holland

Penn Engineering's highest honor, the Harold Pender Award, was given this year to Dr. John H. Holland of the University of Michigan--a professor of electrical engineering, computer science and psychology who is regarded as "the father of the so-called genetic algorithms and one of today's most innovative and visionary thinkers in the study of complexity," as Dean Eduardo Glandt put it.

The Pender Award was created in honor of the founding dean of the Moore School, who held office 1923-49, and is given periodically to "an outstanding member of the engineering profession who has achieved distinction by significant contributions to society."

Dr. Holland, author of Emergence: from Chaos to Order and other seminal books, is a McArthur Award recipient and a Levy Medalist of the Franklin Institute who also holds a host of other awards in computer science.

Six Alumni Awards

The University of Pennsylvania Alumni Society gave its Alumni Award of Merit to six Penn graduates last Friday, recognizing "extraordinary and longstanding service and commitment" to the University. The recipients are Robert A. Fox, C '52; H. Jane Gutman, CW '73; Jon H. Huntsman, W '59; Sally Stull Jannetta, SAMP '57; Lee F. Shlifer, CGS '74; and Douglas Q. L. Yee, W '65 and W'67.

The Alumni Society also gave a Class Award of Merit to the Class of 1941, a David N. Tyre Award for excellence in newsletter writing to the Class of 1939, and Regional Program of Merit Awards to the Penn Club of Washington, D.C. and the Penn Club of Southern California.

... and Some Received
 Dr. Rodin's selection as a "Frontrunner" carried a $50,000 award for Women's Studies at Penn.

Century of Women: Dr. Rodin

In a White House ceremony hosted by First Lady Hillary Rodham Clinton last month, Penn's President Judith Rodin was honored by the Sara Lee Foundation in its Century of Women "Front-runners" program as one of four women whose "trailblazing accomplishments have both shaped America's past and given inspiration for the future."

Dr. Rodin named the Penn Women's Studies Program to receive the $50,000 award that accompanies the Foundation's selection of women it designates as Frontrunners. Dr. Rodin is the Frontrunner in the humanities this year, while the master chef Julia Child holds the award in the arts; Kraft Foods' EVP Anne Fudge in business, and Secretary of Labor Alexis Herman in government. Earlier Frontrunners include Maya Angelou, Toni Morrison, Elizabeth Dole and Donna Karan.

Honorary Degree: Dr. O'Donnell

This fall at the annual academic convocation of St. Michael's College of Vermont, the honorary degree doctor of humane letters was conferred upon Penn's Dr. James J. O'Donnell, who also gave the convocation's learned lecture: a talk on innovative pedagogy with the tongue-in-cheek title, "How to Prove the Earth is Flat."

Dr. O'Donnell's three main positions at Penn are professor of classical studies; vice provost for information systems and computing; and faculty master of Hill House; and he is currently in the news for his book Avatars of the Word: From Papyrus to Cyberspace (Harvard 1998). The St. Michael's degree also recognized earlier, internationally known work on Latin Christianity in late antiquity, including a "monumental three-volume introduction, text and commentary to Augustine's Confessions" (Oxford 1992).

Dr. O'Donnell, in regalia for his honorary degree at St. Michael's College of Vermont, told "How to Prove the World is Flat."

Colburn Award: Dr. Diamond

Last week in Dallas, Dr. Scott L. Diamond, who joined SEAS in 1997 as associate professor of chemical engineering, was awarded the American Institute of Chemical Engineers' 1999 Allan P. Colburn Award for Excellence in Publications by a Young Member of the Institute. Dr. Diamond, associate editor of the Annals of Biomedical Engineering, focuses his research on vascular cell mechano-biology, drug and gene delivery, thrombosis and thrombolysis and bio-transport phenomena. His research in issues of cardiovascular disease of the arterial system also led to his receiving the 1999 American Heart Association's Established Investigator Award.

Clinical Scholarship: Dr. Aiken

Dr. Linda Aiken, the noted sociologist who is the Claire M. Fagin Leadership Professor of Nursing and director of the Center for Health Service and Policy Research, has received the Clincal Scholarship Award of Sigma Theta Tau, the honor society of nursing.

AAMC: Dr. Kelley

At last month's annual meeting of the Association of Medical Colleges, Penn's Dean William N. Kelley, CEO of the Penn Health System, received the David E. Rogers Award for improving health and health care in the United States.

Elections to Institute of Medicine

Two members of the Penn faculty are among the 55 scientists elected to the Institute of Medicine this year. They are:

Dr. Loretta Sweet Jemmott, associate professor of nursing and director of the School of Nursing's Center for Urban Health Research;

Dr. David W. Kennedy, professor and chairman of otorhinolaryngology and head and neck surgery in the School of Medicine.

Two elected to the Institute last year are Dr. N. Scott Adzick, the C. Everett Koop Professor of Pediatric Surgery who is also professor of Ob/Gyn, and Dr. Stephen Ludwig, professor of pediatrics at CHOP.

 Dr. Jemmott is one of two Penn faculty members just elected to the Institute of Medicine.

Almanac, Vol. 46, No. 11, November 9, 1999