New & noteworthy
The Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Sciences’ professor emeritus Manuel Blum, professor Shafi Goldwasser (M.S.’81, Ph.D.’84 CS), professor Stuart Russell and alumnus Scott Aaronson (Ph.D.’04 CS) were named to Academic Influence’s list of “Top Influential Computer Scientists” from 2010–20.
Mechanical engineering professors Alice Agogino (M.S.’78 ME) and Oliver O’Reilly are co-recipients of the 2021 Berkeley Faculty Award, which honors their outstanding and dedicated service to the campus.
Zakaria Al Balushi, assistant professor of materials science and engineering, and Jelani Nelson, professor of electrical engineering and computer sciences, were named to Cell Mentor’s list of “100 More Inspiring Black Scientists in America.”
Civil and environmental engineering professor Lisa Alvarez-Cohen is part of a team that received the 2020 Strategic Environmental Research and Development Program Project of the Year Award for Environmental Restoration from the Department of Defense.
Cecilia Aragon (M.S.’87, Ph.D.’04 CS) has written a memoir titled “Flying Free,” which describes how she became the first Latina pilot to win a spot on the United States Unlimited Aerobatic Team that competed at the World Aerobatic Championships in 1991.
Professor Alper Atamturk is the new chair of the Department of Industrial Engineering and Operations Research, replacing the outgoing chair, professor Zuo-Jun “Max” Shen.
Christopher Ategeka (B.S.’11, M.S.’12 ME), founder and managing partner at UCOT, Inc., has been awarded UC Berkeley’s Mark Bingham Award for Excellence in Achievement by Young Alumni.
Alexia Aubault (M.S.’05 Ocean Engineering), Christian Cermelli (M.S.’90, Ph.D.’95 Naval
Architecture) and Dominique Roddier (Ph.D.’00 Naval Architecture) were awarded the prestigious 2020 Elmer A. Sperry Award for their discovery, design, fabrication and commercialization of Principle Power’s WindFloat, a floating platform supporting a large wind turbine.
Electrical engineering and computer sciences professor Ruzena Bajcsy has won the IEEE Medal
for Innovations in Healthcare Technology for “pioneering and sustained contributions to healthcare technology fundamental to computer vision, medical imaging and computational anatomy.”
Electrical engineering and computer sciences professors John Canny and Sanjit Seshia have been elected to the 2020 class of fellows of the Association for Computing Machinery in recognition of their fundamental contributions to computing and information technology.
Senior electrical engineering and computer sciences student Steven Cao has won a Computing Research Association 2021 Outstanding Undergraduate Researcher Award. Other award-winning Berkeley Engineering students include Stephen Tian (runner-up), Ryan Lehmkuhl (finalist) and Joey Hejna (honorable mention).
Gerbrand Ceder, professor of materials science and engineering, has been named an American Physical Society fellow for his “extensive contributions to the fundamental understanding of energy storage materials, and for pioneering the materials genome approach for computational materials design.”
Civil and environmental engineering graduate student Amber Chau (B.S.’20 CE) was selected by the American Society of Civil Engineers, San Francisco Section, for its 2020 Outstanding Civil Engineering Student Award. The award recognizes a civil engineer under the age of 35 who has exhibited professional achievement and has made significant impact to the field of engineering.
Robert Chen (B.S.’13 BioE), Joshua Nixon (B.S.’16 BioE) and Joshua Yang (MTM’16 BioE) were all named to Forbes’ “30 Under 30” list for 2021.
Assistant professors Alvin Cheung and Jonathan Ragan-Kelley of electrical engineering and computer sciences are among the winners of Intel’s 2020 Outstanding Research Awards for their work in developing ARION, a system for compiling programs onto heterogeneous platforms.
Assistant professor of electrical engineering and computer sciences Alessandro Chiesa has been selected as a 2021 Alfred P. Sloan Research Fellow in Computer Science.
Jonathan Colby (B.S.’02 ME) is the resident engineer on Verdant Power’s Roosevelt Island Tidal Energy project, which aims to convert energy from marine tides into electricity, recently installing tidal turbines in New York’s East River.
Rafael Davalos (M.S.’95, Ph.D.’02 ME), professor of biomedical engineering at Virginia Tech, has been named winner of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers’ 2021 Van C. Mow Medal in honor of his contributions to the field of bioengineering.
James Dietrich (M.S.’66 CE) has published a book, “Too Much by Half: The Coming Cut in Proved Oil Reserves,” that describes his career as an international consultant as well as his take on the coming end of the oil age.
Fiona Doyle, professor emeritus of materials science and engineering and former dean of the Graduate Division, is among eight new 2021 fellows of the Minerals, Metals and Materials Society.
Assistant professor of electrical engineering and computer sciences Anca Dragan has won the 2021 IEEE Robotics and Automation Society Early Career Award for her work in pioneering algorithmic human-robot interaction.
An infant-warming device developed by civil and environmental engineering professor Ashok Gadgil and Berkeley Lab’s Vi Rapp (Ph.D.’11 ME) was recently recognized with an honorable mention in the 2020 Patents for Humanity Awards.
Civil and environmental engineering professor Allen Goldstein has been elected Fellow of the American Association of Aerosol Research.
Shafi Goldwasser (M.S.’81, Ph.D.’84 CS) professor of electrical engineering and computer sciences and director of the Simons Institute for the Theory of Computing, has won the L’Oréal-UNESCO for Women in Science International Award for her work in computer science and cryptography.
Mechanical engineering assistant professor Kosa Goucher-Lambert was named as one of the reviewers of the year by the Journal of Mechanical Design.
Paul Grigas, assistant professor of industrial engineering and operations research, was selected as winner of the 2020 INFORMS Junior Faculty Interest Group Paper Competition for his work with Columbia University’s Adam Elmachtoub on a new prediction and optimization framework.
Tim Guertin (B.S.’72 EECS), CEO emeritus of Varian Medical Systems, has received UC Berkeley’s 2021 Campanile Excellence in Achievement Award.
Alex Horne, professor emeritus of civil and environmental engineering, and co-authors — including Marc Beutel (M.S.’94, Ph.D.’00 CEE) and Rodney Jung (M.S.’77 CEE), among others — were awarded the Best Paper Award by the North America Lake and Reservoir Management Journal for their work on the use of deep-water pure oxygenation to solve water quality and fish kills in the Mokelumne River salmon hatchery and the Camanche Reservoir.
Civil and environmental engineering professor Arpad Horvath is the founding editor-in-chief of Environmental Research: Infrastructure and Sustainability, a multidisciplinary journal devoted to addressing important challenges relevant to infrastructure.
Hayley Iben (M.S.’05, Ph.D.’07 CS), director of engineering at Pixar, earned a Technical Achievement Award from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences for her work with Pixar colleagues to create the Taz Hair Simulation System, which brought realistic movement to the hairstyles of hundreds of characters in animated films, including “Brave” and “Inside Out.”
Michael Jordan, professor of electrical engineering and computer sciences and of statistics, has been awarded the 2021 American Mathematical Society Ulf Grenander Prize in Stochastic Theory and Modeling.
Ramzi Jreidini (M.S.’12 CEE) is the founder and CEO of Handiss, a market network for freelancers and small firms in architecture and engineering.
Associate professor of electrical engineering and computer sciences Boubacar Kanté has been selected as a Moore Inventor Fellow.
Sanjay Kumar, professor of bioengineering, Robert Ritchie, professor of mechanical engineering and of materials science and engineering, and Peidong Yang, professor of materials science and engineering and of chemistry, have been elected fellows of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.
Electrical engineering and computer sciences professor emeritus Kam Lau has won the 2021 IEEE Microwave Theory & Techniques Society Microwave Power Award.
Negar Mehr (Ph.D.’19 ME), assistant professor of aerospace engineering at the University of
Illinois Urbana-Champaign, won the 2020 IEEE ITS Best Dissertation Award, given for work in any ITS area that is innovative and relevant to practice.
Mechanical engineering Ph.D. student George Moore was honored with the 2020 Birgeneau Recognition Award for Service to Underrepresented Students.
Richard Morales (M.S.’86 CE) was honored with the 2020 Whitney M. Young Jr. National Service Award from the Boy Scouts of America in recognition of his outstanding service as chairman of the Exploring Engineering STEM Academy, which introduces low-income high school students in Atlanta to the engineering profession.
Assistant professor of electrical engineering and computer sciences Rikky Muller (Ph.D.’13 EECS) has won the 2021 IEEE Solid-State Circuits Society New Frontier Award for her work in designing and building a high-speed holographic projector that can stream 3D light into the brain at neural speeds.
Ali Niknejad (M.S.’97, Ph.D.’00 EE), professor of electrical engineering and computer sciences, has won the University Research Award by the Semiconductor Industry Association and the Semiconductor Research Corporation.
Grace O’Connell, associate professor of mechanical engineering, has been named a 2021 fellow of the American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering.
David Patterson, professor emeritus of electrical engineering and computer sciences, has won the Frontiers of Knowledge Award in Information and Communication Technologies from the BBVA Foundation.
Lily Peng (Ph.D.’10 BioE), product manager at Google Health, and Kate Rosenbluth (Ph.D.’09 BioE), founder and CEO of Cala Health, have been named to Fortune’s “40 Under 40” list.
Kristin Persson, professor of materials science and engineering, has been named director of Berkeley Lab’s Molecular Foundry.
Dorsa Sadigh (B.S.’11, Ph.D.’17 EECS) has been recognized with the IEEE Technical Committee on Cyber-Physical Systems Early Career Award for “contributions to the theory, design, and implementation of human cyber-physical systems.’’ She is currently an assistant professor of computer science and electrical engineering at Stanford University.
Industrial engineering and operations research assistant professor Barna Saha was selected as
the 2020 recipient of the Young Alumnus Award by the Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur.
David Schaffer, professor of bioengineering and of chemical and biomolecular engineering, is the 2020 recipient of the Andreas Acrivos Award for Professional Progress in Chemical Engineering from the AIChE Foundation.
Rachel Slaybaugh, associate professor of nuclear engineering, has been named director of Berkeley Lab’s Cyclotron Road Division, which has supported leading entrepreneurial scientists since 2015. Innovators in the division’s fellowship program spend two years developing transformative technologies for advanced manufacturing, clean power and electronics. Most recently, Slaybaugh served as program director for the Department of Energy’s Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy. (Photo by Noah Berger)
Maryann Simmons (M.S.’97, Ph.D.’01 CS), senior staff software engineer at Walt Disney Animation Studios, was honored with a Technical Achievement Award from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences for her work on the Walt Disney Animation Studios Hair Simulation System, which allows artists to manipulate hair in realistic ways and was used in animated features including “Tangled.”
Electrical engineering and computer sciences professor Dawn Song (Ph.D.’02 CS) has won the ACM SIGSAC Outstanding Innovation Award for her “contributions to systems and software security, in particular, dynamic taint analysis for vulnerability discovery and malware detection.”
Electrical engineering and computer sciences professor emeritus Michael Stonebraker has won the prestigious NEC Computers and Communications Prize for his contributions to relational database systems.
Gitanjali Swamy (M.S.’93, Ph.D.’96 EECS), managing partner at IoTask, has been named one of the most Influential Women in Technology in 2020 by Analytics Insight.
PROVEN, the world’s first microbial biofertilizer for cereal crops, has been named one of the 100
Best Inventions of 2020 by Time Magazine. The product was developed by PivotBio, founded by Karsten Temme (Ph.D.’10 BioE).
Mechanical engineering professor Masayoshi Tomizuka was awarded the 2020 IEEE ITS Lifetime Achievement Award, as well as an American Society of Mechanical Engineers’ Honorary Membership.
Laura Waller, associate professor of electrical engineering and computer sciences, has been elected a Fellow of the American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering. She was also selected as the 2021 recipient of the Optical Society of America Adolph Lomb Medal.
Peidong Yang, professor of materials science and engineering and of chemistry, received the 2020 Global Energy Prize in the non-conventional energy category for the invention of the nanoparticle-based solar cell and artificial photosynthesis.
Electrical engineering and computer sciences professor Katherine Yelick has won The Berkeley Lab Citation, the LBNL Director’s Award for Exceptional Achievement, for her role in developing Department of Energy strategy in exascale and quantum computing, big data and artificial intelligence.
Mechanical engineering professor emeritus Ronald Yeung (B.S.’68, M.S.’70, Ph.D.’73 Naval
Architecture) has been awarded the 2020 Offshore Technology Conference Distinguished
Achievement Award for Individuals.
Mechanical engineering professor Tarek Zohdi is the new academic director for the Sutardja Center for Entrepreneurship and Technology.