Academy Elects 2 Scholars, Local Philanthropist
Two UC Santa Barbara professors—David Awschalom and Michael Goodchild—have been elected fellows of the prestigious American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the academy announced last month.
Joining the two academics in this year’s class of fellows is the philanthropist and inventor Fred Kavli of Santa Barbara, for whom the Kavli Institute for Theoretical Physics is named.
“This is a wonderful honor that recognizes the outstanding achievements of two of our UC Santa Barbara colleagues,” said Chancellor Henry T. Yang. “We also are delighted to learn that, in addition to professors Awschalom and Goodchild, the academy has elected Fred Kavli, whose pioneering spirit and creative vision inspire us all.”
The academy’s 2006 class of 175 fellows and 20 foreign honorary members also includes former Presidents George H.W. Bush and William Jefferson Clinton; Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts; and leading scientists and scholars from across the nation.
The election of Awschalom and Goodchild brings to 23 the number of UCSB faculty members who have been elected fellows of the academy. Awschalom, a professor of physics and of electrical and computer engineering, is director of the Center for Spintronics and Quantum Computation and associate director of the University’s California NanoSystems Institute.
He joined the UCSB faculty in 1991. “I am deeply surprised and very grateful,” he said of his selection as a fellow. “It is an honor to be included in such distinguished and diverse company.”
Awschalom’s other recent honors include the Agilent Europhysics Prize from the European Physical Society and the American Physical Society’s Oliver E. Buckley Prize, both awarded in 2005.
Goodchild is a professor of geography and an internationally recognized pioneer in computer-based geographical information systems. He joined the faculty as a professor in 1989 and headed the National Center for Geographic Information and Analysis.
Of his selection as a new fellow of the academy he said: “I’m completely surprised and very honored. It’s good to see UCSB recognized in this way.”
Goodchild’s was named educator of the year by the University Consortium for Geographic Information Science in 2002, and Britain’s Royal Geographical Society awarded him a gold Founder’s Medal in 2003. Most recently, he received a 2006 Distinguished Career Award from the Association of American Geographers’ Geographic Information Science and Systems Specialty Group.
Fred Kavli is a Norwegian-born physicist, business leader, innovator, and philanthropist dedicated to supporting research and education that has a positive, long-term impact on the human condition. Through his Kavli Foundation and the Kavli Operating Institute, he has been deeply involved in supporting UCSB in recent years, endowing two chairs in engineering and landmark grants to UCSB’s Institute for Theoretical Physics, which was named in his honor in 2002.