UC Berkeley News


Blue ribbons, gold stars, honorable mentions.

26 September 2007

Being green has earned the campus a silver medal from the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education, which awarded Berkeley "honorable mention" at a ceremony earlier this month at Ball State University. As AASHE's executive director wrote to sustainability specialist Fahmida Ahmed, "The judges were impressed by [Berkeley's] across-the-board leadership for sustainability and, in particular, [its] leadership in adopting ambitious greenhouse-gas emissions-reduction goals." Among a long list of achievements, the campus has saved more than 2 million kilowatt-hours of energy since 2005 through the use of fluorescent-light fixtures, lighting controls and sensors, and building metering.

The Graduate School of Education, meanwhile, has produced a bumper crop of honorees in recent months. Marcia Linn, professor of cognition and development and director of the Technology-Enhanced Learning in Science (TELS) center, has been elected to membership in the National Academy of Education. Claire Kramsch, professor of German and foreign-language acquisition, and the director of the Berkeley Language Center, received a Distinguished Scholarship and Service Award from the American Association for Applied Linguistics. GSE Dean P. David Pearson has been elected chair of the California Commission on Teacher Credentialing. Glynda Hull, professor of language and literacy, society, and culture, received the first annual Chancellor's Public Service Award for her contributions to community service, particularly as a co-founder of the K-12 literacy program Digital Underground Storytelling for Youth. And Jabari Mahiri, an associate professor of language and literacy, society, and culture, was among four recipients of the 2007 Chancellor's Award for Advancing Institutional Excellence.

Chancellor's Awards for Advanc­ing Institutional Excellence were also given to Caroline Kane, professor of molecular and cell biology; Frederick Collignon, professor of city and regional planning; and Susan Schweik, professor of English. Winners earn $30,000, which is placed in a departmental account to be used at the discretion of the recipient.

The American Anthropological Association has recognized arch-aeologist Kent Lightfoot with the AAA/McGraw Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching of Anthropology, and will formally present the award at the organization's annual meeting in Washington, D.C., in late November. Lightfoot, a Berkeley faculty member since 1987, specializes in the study of coastal hunter-gatherer peoples, culture contact research, and the archaeology of colonialism; much of his research has focused on prehistoric Native Californian peoples and their later encounters with early European explorers and colonists.

On the arts-and-humanities front, Tung-Hui Hu, a doctoral candidate in film studies, has won a $3,000 James D. Phelan Literary Award from the San Francisco Foundation/Intersection for the Arts. The author of a new book of poems, Mine (Ausable Press, 2007), he'll be reading at Cody's Books on Fourth Street on Oct. 6.

And in the category of lifetime achievements in research, Enrique Iglesia, Chancellor Professor of Chemical Engineering and a faculty scientist at LBNL, has received a 2007 Humboldt Research Award from Germany's Humboldt Foundation. Award winners - scientists and scholars "whose fundamental discoveries, new theories, or insights have had a significant impact on their own discipline and who are expected to continue producing cutting-edge achievements" - are invited to spend up to a year working with colleagues at a research institution in Germany. Iglesia's research, as he has described it, "focuses on the basic processes involved in the synthesis of inorganic structures and in their function as heterogeneous catalysts for reactions used in refining, energy conversion, petrochemical synthesis, and environmental protection."

The Humboldt Foundation similarly recognized plant biology professor Bob Buchanan with a research award, which he reports will support a sabbatical year with time divided between the University of Munich and the Max Planck Institute of Molecular Plant Physiology in Golm. Buchanan was also the recipient of a Career Achievement Award by the College of Natural Resources, and - along with Russell Jones, also a professor in the Department of Plant and Microbial Biology - was named an inaugural fellow of the American Society of Plant Taxonomics "in recognition of distinguished and long-term contributions to plant biology and service to the society."

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