In April, President Lee C. Bollinger named Ruth DeFries and Jeffrey Sachs as University Professors, the highest rank Columbia bestows on faculty. Bollinger noted that DeFries, the Denning Family Professor of Sustainable Development and co-director of the Undergraduate Program in Sustainable Development at the Earth Institute, focuses on “understanding the changes experienced by the planet over the course of human existence” while Sachs, the Quetelet Professor of Sustainable Development and professor of health policy and management, “is a peerless economist who has dedicated his life to building a sustainable future and reducing global poverty.”
Eight faculty members won Columbia Distinguished Faculty Awards, known as the Lenfest Awards. Established in 2005 with a $12 million gift from then-Trustee Gerry Lenfest LAW’58, Lenfest Awards honors exceptional instruction and scholarship; winners each receive a $25,000 stipend for three years. The 2016 recipients are Marcel Agüeros ’96 (assistant professor of astronomy), Gil Anidjar (professor in the Departments of Religion and Middle Eastern, South Asian, and African Studies), Susan Boynton (professor and chair of the Department of Music), Terence D’Altroy (the Loubat Professor of American Archaeology in the Department of Anthropology), Timothy Donnelly SOA’98 (associate professor and chair of the writing division in the School of the Arts), Michael Golston (associate professor in the Department of English and Comparative Literature), Bärbel Hönisch (associate professor in the Department of Earth and Environmental Science) and Dana Pe’er (associate professor of biological sciences).
Peter Bearman, the Jonathan R. Cole Professor of the Social Sciences, and Adam Kirsch, a poet and literary critic who directs Columbia’s master’s program in Jewish studies and is the program coordinator of the Institute for Israel and Jewish Studies, received Guggenheim Fellowships, awarded to mid-career scholars and scientists whose work demonstrates both prior achievement and exceptional promise.
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