Seven Vanderbilt faculty elected as AAAS fellows in 2021

Seven Vanderbilt University and Vanderbilt University Medical Center faculty members have been elected 2021 fellows of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, an honor bestowed upon AAAS members by their peers. Among those elected is Provost and Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs Cybele Raver, for her contributions to improving early childhood learning and development in the context of family poverty. As a highly regarded developmental psychologist, her leadership has spanned research, clinical, academic and administrative settings through her career.

“We are proud to recognize Vanderbilt’s 2021 AAAS fellows for achieving this prestigious distinction honoring their scientific contributions, which represent major advancements in their respective fields and exemplify the chief pursuit of our educational and research mission to move society ever forward,” Chancellor Daniel Diermeier said.

In addition to Raver, who holds the Cornelius Vanderbilt chair and is professor of psychology and human development at Peabody College, the new fellows represent the College of Arts and Science, the School of Engineering and the School of Medicine.

“I am delighted to join and congratulate our newly elected fellows, whose ambitious work continues to raise the bar for innovation and scientific inquiry,” Raver said. “These six scholars are not only exceptional ambassadors for Vanderbilt, they also represent the immense value and impact of university research for society.”

The 2021 fellows from Vanderbilt are:

Brandt F. Eichman, William R. Kenan, Jr. Chair and professor of biological sciences and professor of biochemistry: For distinguished contributions to the field of structural cell biology, particularly for understanding the molecular and structural mechanisms of DNA replication and repair.

Michael R. King, J. Lawrence Wilson Professor of Engineering and chair and professor of biomedical engineering, professor of radiology and radiological sciences: For distinguished contributions to the fields of biotransport phenomena, cellular mechanotransduction and nanoparticle drug delivery, particularly to understand the behavior of blood and cancer cells in the circulation.

Dr. Bjorn C. Knollmann, professor of medicine: For distinguished contributions to the field of medicine, particular for the study of arrhythmia mechanisms leading to the discovery of new treatments of human disease.

Jens Meiler, distinguished research professor of chemistry: For distinguished contributions to the development and widespread dissemination of methods for determining protein structure and de novo design and engineering of proteins.

Cybele Raver, provost and vice chancellor for academic affairs and Cornelius Vanderbilt chair and professor of psychology and human development at Peabody College of education and human development: For distinguished contribution to the significant advancement of knowledge about ways to improve young children’s early learning and development in the context of family poverty.

Dr. Lorraine B. Ware, professor of medicine: For distinguished contributions to the field of translational research in acute lung injury, particularly for studies of novel mediators of acute respiratory distress syndrome as new therapeutic targets.

Sharon Weiss, Cornelius Vanderbilt Professor of Engineering, professor of electrical engineering and materials science and engineering and physics: For distinguished contributions to the field of silicon photonics, particularly for guided wave optical biosensors and novel approaches to tailor light-matter interactions.

AAAS recognized 564 new fellows this year for their scientifically or socially distinguished efforts to advance science or its applications. Vanderbilt has 138 AAAS fellows among its current and emeriti faculty.

“AAAS is proud to bestow the honor of AAAS Fellow to some of today’s brightest minds who are integral to forging our path into the future,” said Sudip Parikh, AAAS chief executive officer and executive publisher of the Science family of journals. “We celebrate these distinguished individuals for their invaluable contributions to the scientific enterprise.”

The new fellows will be celebrated Feb. 19 at the association’s Annual Meeting, which is convening in a hybrid format in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and online.