UC Berkeley News


Blue ribbons, gold stars, honorable mentions.

31 October 2007

Arash Komelli, an assistant professor in the Department of Plant and Microbial Biology, has been named one of 20 new promising scientific researchers by the David and Lucile Packard Foundation, which cited his work in "elucidating the molecular mechanisms behind the formation of nanometer-sized magnetite crystals within the magnetosome organelles of magnetotactic bacteria." If the science sounds difficult, the math is simple: Each of the 20 Packard Fellowships for Science and Engineering comes with an unrestricted research grant of $625,000 over five years.

Meanwhile, at the Center for Environmental Design Research, research-specialist lecturer Charlie Huizenga has won the 2007 Ralph G. Nevins Physiology and Human Environment Award, given annually to a researcher under the age of 40 for significant accomplishment in the study of bioenvironmental engineering and its effect on human comfort and health. The award, presented by the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating, and Air-Conditioning Engineers, honors Huizenga's role as one of the driving forces behind the development of the Center for the Built Environment's Advanced Human Thermal Comfort Model, a sophisticated computer model capable of analyzing human thermoregulation in changing indoor environments.

Not content with receiving awards, the Center for the Built Environment recently issued its first-ever Livable Building Awards, which recognize building-resource efficiency, architectural design, and occupant satisfaction, taking into account building users' feelings about lighting, acoustics, and thermal comfort, among other considerations. This year's winners include buildings for Stanford University, De Anza College, and the Chesapeake Bay Foundation in Annapolis, Md.

On the election front, University Librarian Thomas Leonard is the 2007-08 vice president (and president-elect) of the board of the Association of Research Libraries, a nonprofit organization of 123 research libraries in North America. The association's mission is "to influence the changing environment of scholarly communication and the public policies that affect research libraries and the diverse communities they serve." And Helen Diggs, director of the Office of Laboratory Animal Care, has been elected vice president of the American College of Laboratory Animal Medicine, assuring her of roles as president-elect in 2009 and president in 2010. Membership in ACLAM, a specialty board recognized by the American Veterinary Medical Association, comprises laboratory-animal medical specialists working in academic, governmental, and private research organizations.

Graduate Division Associate Dean Joseph Duggan, a longtime professor of comparative literature and French, has been named the 2007-08 recipient of the Edward A. Dickson Emeriti Professorship. The honor was created by Dickson, a UC regent from 1913 to 1946, who in 1955 presented the university with an endowment to support and maintain special annual professorships to be awarded to retired faculty members.

And finally, two outstanding Berkeley publications - California and Greater Good magazines - have been nominated for the 19th annual Utne Independent Press Awards. Both California, published by the California Alumni Association, and Greater Good, published by the Center for the Development of Peace and Well-Being, are nominees in the category of "social/cultural coverage." Winners will be announced in Utne Reader's January/February issue.

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