Honors & Awards

Marcia Chatelain of Georgetown University Is the 2020 Hooks National Book Award Winner

Marcia Chatelain of Georgetown University Is the 2020 Hooks National Book Award Winner

The Benjamin L. Hooks Institute for Social Change at the University of Memphis has named Marcia Chatelain, a professor of history and African American studies at Georgetown University in Washington, D.C., as the 2020 Hooks National Book Award Winner for her book Franchise: The Golden Arches in Black America.

Vanderbilt University's Clanitra Nejdl Honored by the American Association of Law Libraries

Vanderbilt University’s Clanitra Nejdl Honored by the American Association of Law Libraries

Clanitra Nejdl, head of professional development and research services librarian at the law school Vanderbilt University in Nashville, won the Emerging Leader Award and shared the Spectrum Article of the Year Award from the American Association of Law Libraries.

Yale School of Public Health Names a Scholarship After an African American Alumna

Yale School of Public Health Names a Scholarship After an African American Alumna

The executive master’s degree in public health scholarship at the Yale School of Public Health is being named in honor of Irene Trowell-Harris, the first African American woman in the history of the U.S. Air National Guard to be promoted to brigadier general and subsequently, in 1998, to two-star major general.

Virginia Commonwealth University's First Novelist Award Given to Raven Leilani

Virginia Commonwealth University’s First Novelist Award Given to Raven Leilani

Raven Leilani, who has served as an Axinn Foundation Writer-in-Residence at New York University, is the recipient of the 2021 Cabell First Novelist Award given by the creative writing program at Virginia Commonwealth University. The award, now in its 20th year, honors an outstanding debut novel published during the preceding calendar year.

Nashville's Dixie Street Renamed to Honor a "Janitor" Who Pioneered Surgical Techniques

Nashville’s Dixie Street Renamed to Honor a “Janitor” Who Pioneered Surgical Techniques

Vivien Thomas, who dropped out of college during the Great Depression, developed and refined a corrective cardiac surgical technique to treat “blue baby syndrome” at The Johns Hopkins Hospital in the 1940s. Thomas did not receive due credit for the lifesaving advance for decades.

Two African American Faculty Members Win the Pulitzer Prize

Two African American Faculty Members Win the Pulitzer Prize

Marcia Chatelain, a professor of history and African American studies at Georgetown University in Washington, D.C., won the Pulitzer Prize in history and Mitchell S. Jackson, an assistant professor of English at the University of Chicago, was awarded a Pulitzer Prize for feature writing

Brittany Pearl Battle of Wake Forest University Honored by Sociologists for Women in Society

Brittany Pearl Battle of Wake Forest University Honored by Sociologists for Women in Society

The Feminist Activism Award from the organization Sociologists for Women in Society was established in 1995. The award is presented annually to an SWS member who has notably and consistently used sociology to improve conditions for women in society.

Arkansas State University Honors Its First Black Faculty Member

Arkansas State University Honors Its First Black Faculty Member

The University of Arkansas System board of trustees has voted to rename the building housing the military science program as the Lieutenant Colonel Frederick C. Turner Jr. Military Science Building.

Thavolia Glymph Wins Three Awards From the Organization of American Historians

Thavolia Glymph Wins Three Awards From the Organization of American Historians

Thavolia Glymph, the Peabody Family Distinguished Professor of History at Duke University in Durham, North Carolina, was honored with three awards for her book on the role of Black and White women during the Civil War.

Jessica Marie Johnson Honored for Her Book on Black Women in the Colonial Atlantic World

Jessica Marie Johnson Honored for Her Book on Black Women in the Colonial Atlantic World

Jessica Marie Johnson, an assistant professor of history at the Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, has won the Kemper and Leila Williams Prize in Louisiana History. The honor is bestowed by The Historic New Orleans Collection and the Louisiana Historical Association.

Princeton University's Nathan Alan Davis Wins Windham-Campbell Prize for Drama

Princeton University’s Nathan Alan Davis Wins Windham-Campbell Prize for Drama

Nathan Alan Davis, the Roger S. Berlind ’52 Playwright-in-Residence at the Lewis Center for the Arts at Princeton University in New Jersey. Davis is an alumnus of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Indiana University Bloomington, and The Juilliard School.

James L. Moore III Honored by the American Council on Education

James L. Moore III Honored by the American Council on Education

James L. Moore III, vice provost for diversity and inclusion and chief diversity officer at Ohio State University, has been awarded the 2021 Reginald Wilson Diversity Leadership Award. The award honors individuals who have demonstrated leadership and commitment on a national level to the advancement of racial and ethnic minorities in higher education.

Kaja Dunn Honored for Her Work Addressing Issues of Race in Theatre Education

Kaja Dunn Honored for Her Work Addressing Issues of Race in Theatre Education

Kaja Dunn, an assistant professor of theatre at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte received the Kennedy Center Medallion from the National Committee of the Kennedy Center American College Theater Festival. The medallion is the organization’s highest honor.

Maria Magdalena Campos-Pons of Vanderbilt University Wins the 2021 Pérez Prize

Maria Magdalena Campos-Pons of Vanderbilt University Wins the 2021 Pérez Prize

Campos-Pons grew up on a sugar plantation in the Matanzas province of Cuba, and her family has Nigerian, Hispanic, and Chinese roots. She was a pioneer of the New Cuban Art Movement that opposed Communist repression in Cuba during the late 1980s.

Yale's Marcella Nunez-Smith Honored to Her Work to Address COVID-19 Racial Disparities

Yale’s Marcella Nunez-Smith Honored to Her Work to Address COVID-19 Racial Disparities

Dr. Nunez-Smith, an associate professor and associate dean for health equity research at Yale Medical School, was honored for her work to address the disproportionate impact of COVID-19 on Black and brown communities.

Bridgette M. Brawner Honored by the International Society of Psychiatric-Mental Health Nurses

Bridgette M. Brawner Honored by the International Society of Psychiatric-Mental Health Nurses

Bridgette M. Brawner is an associate professor in the department of family and community health at the University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing. Her research focuses on HIV and AIDS among Black residents of Philadelphia and on how mental health conditions, such as depression in Black youth, correlate with unhealthy behaviors.

William Jackson of the University of California, Davis Honored by the National Science Board

William Jackson of the University of California, Davis Honored by the National Science Board

The National Science Board recognized Dr. Jackson, a distinguished researcher and emeritus professor of chemistry at the University of California, Davis, as both a leader in the field of chemistry and a mentor and advocate for increasing minority participation in science.

Vanderbilt University's Steven Townsend Honored by the American Chemical Society

Vanderbilt University’s Steven Townsend Honored by the American Chemical Society

Dr. Townsend received the 2021 David Y. Gin Young Investigator Award from the American Chemical Society. The award recognizes “outstanding contributions to research in carbohydrate chemistry by scientists in the first seven years of their independent career.”

Nicole Fleetwood of Rutgers University Wins National Book Critics Circle Award

Nicole Fleetwood of Rutgers University Wins National Book Critics Circle Award

Dr. Fleetwod’s book – Marking Time: Art in the Age of Mass Incarceration – which took nine years to complete, is based on scores of interviews with incarcerated people and their families, prison staff, activists, and other observers. It explores the importance of people in prison creating art as a means to survive incarceration.

CalTech's Ibrahim Cissé Awarded the Vilcek Prize in Biomedical Science

CalTech’s Ibrahim Cissé Awarded the Vilcek Prize in Biomedical Science

The $100,000 prize is awarded annually to young immigrant scientists living and working in the United States “whose early-career work exemplifies outstanding scientific accomplishment, and presents a significant contribution to their field of study.”

North Carolina A&T State University Names New Engineering Complex After Its Chancellor

North Carolina A&T State University Names New Engineering Complex After Its Chancellor

The new Harold L. Martin, Sr., Engineering Research and Innovation Complex, scheduled for completion in August, is a $90-million facility that will enhance the research and instructional capacities of a college that leads the nation in the graduation of African American engineers.

Nicole Ausmer to Receive the Outstanding Achievement in Diversity Award

Nicole Ausmer to Receive the Outstanding Achievement in Diversity Award

The award is presented by the National Association of Campus Activities to individuals that positively contribute to the development of programs and services promoting cultural diversity, understanding, and awareness. Dr. Ausmer is director of Student Activities and Leadership Development at the University of Cincinnati.

University of Arkansas' Jeffrey Allen Murdock Wins the 2021 Grammy Music Educator Award

University of Arkansas’ Jeffrey Allen Murdock Wins the 2021 Grammy Music Educator Award

The prestigious Grammy Music Educator Award recognizes current educators who have made a significant and lasting contribution to the field of music education and who demonstrate a commitment to the broader cause of maintaining music education in the schools.

Samson Jenekhe Wins the 2021 Polymer Physics Prize

Samson Jenekhe Wins the 2021 Polymer Physics Prize

Samson Jenekhe is the Boeing-Martin Professor of Chemical Engineering at the University of Washington. The Polymer Physics Prize was established in 1960 in conjunction with the Dow Chemical Company, which remains its chief supporter, and includes a cash award of $10,000.

University of California, Davis Chancellor Receives Lifetime Mentoring Award

University of California, Davis Chancellor Receives Lifetime Mentoring Award

Gary S. May, chancellor of the University of California, Davis, has received the 2021 Lifetime Mentor Award from the American Association for the Advancement of Science. The award honors researchers who have positively impacted a department or institution over the course of 25 years.

Kiki Petrosino of the University of Virginia Wins the 2021 Rilke Prize

Kiki Petrosino of the University of Virginia Wins the 2021 Rilke Prize

Professor Petrosino was honored for her poetry collection that weaves together a variety of poetic forms – villanelles, a heroic crown and erasure – to explore her Black heritage and larger societal issues with the legacy of slavery and race relations in America.

Esther Ngumbi Honored for Work to Enhance Public Engagement With Science

Esther Ngumbi Honored for Work to Enhance Public Engagement With Science

Esther Ngumbi, an assistant professor of entomology at the University of Illinois, is the 2021 recipient of the Mani L. Bhaumik Award for Public Engagement with Science, an annual award given out by the American Association for the Advancement of Science. Previous winners have included Carl Sagan and Neil deGrasse Tyson.

Princeton University's Keith Wailoo Will Share the $1 Million David Dan Prize

Princeton University’s Keith Wailoo Will Share the $1 Million David Dan Prize

Keith Wailoo is the Henry Putnam University Professor of History and Public Affairs at Princeton University. He is being honored for his historical scholarship focused on race, science, and health equity; on the social implications of medical innovation; and on the politics of disease.

Shirley Ann Jackson Wins Award From the American Association of Physics Teachers

Shirley Ann Jackson Wins Award From the American Association of Physics Teachers

Dr. Jackson was chair of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission from 1995 to 1999. She then left government service to take over as the 18th president of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in 1999. She was the first African American woman to earn a Ph.D. in any discipline from MIT.

Harvard's Henry Louis Gates Jr. Honored by the American Academy of Arts & Sciences

Harvard’s Henry Louis Gates Jr. Honored by the American Academy of Arts & Sciences

Professor Gates received the Don M. Randel Award for Humanistic Studies from the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. The award has been given out only seven times since it was established in 1975.

Antoinette Landor of the University of Missouri Honored for Mentoring Undergraduate Researchers

Antoinette Landor of the University of Missouri Honored for Mentoring Undergraduate Researchers

Antoinette Landor, associate professor in the department of human development and family science in the College of Human Environmental Sciences at the University of Missouri, was recently named the 2020 Undergraduate Research Mentor by the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities.

Creighton University Chemistry Scholar Honored by the Camille and Henry Dreyfus Foundation

Creighton University Chemistry Scholar Honored by the Camille and Henry Dreyfus Foundation

Kayode Oshin, associate professor of chemistry in the College of Arts and Sciences at Creighton University in Omaha, Nebraska, has been named a Henry Dreyfus Teacher-Scholar, an award honoring young faculty in the chemical sciences. He will receive a $75,000 award to help fund his research.

Asmeret Asefaw Berhe Wins the Joanne Simpson Medal From the American Geophysical Union

Asmeret Asefaw Berhe Wins the Joanne Simpson Medal From the American Geophysical Union

Asmeret Asefaw Berhe holds the Falasco Chair in Earth Sciences and Geology and is associate dean of the graduate division at the University of California, Merced. The main focus of her research is to understand the effect of changing environmental conditions on vital soil processes.

John Dabiri to Receive the 2020 Alan T. Waterman Award From the National Science Foundation

John Dabiri to Receive the 2020 Alan T. Waterman Award From the National Science Foundation

Waterman awardees each receive $1 million over five years for research in their chosen field of science. Dabiri says the funding will allow him to pursue research into some of the ways climate change challenges and threatens modern life.

Cornell's Derrick Spires Wins First Book Award From the Modern Language Association

Cornell’s Derrick Spires Wins First Book Award From the Modern Language Association

In the book, Dr. Spires, an associate professor of English in the College of Arts and Sciences at Cornell University in Ithaca, New York, examines the parallel development of early Black print culture and legal and cultural understandings of U.S. citizenship between 1787 and 1861.

Sabrina Cherry of the University of North Carolina at Wilmington Wins Peace Corps Award

Sabrina Cherry of the University of North Carolina at Wilmington Wins Peace Corps Award

The Franklin H. Williams Award recognizes ethnically diverse Peace Corps volunteers who have returned from their assignments and have demonstrated a lifelong commitment to civic engagement, service, diversity, inclusion, and world peace.