Faculty Honors & Awards


Anindita “Oni” Basu, PhD, an assistant professor of genetic medicine at the University of Chicago, has received the prestigious National Institutes of Health (NIH) Director’s New Innovator Award.


photo Dr. Hania Al-Hallaq 08/21/2020

The American Association of Physicists in Medicine (AAPM) announced that Dr. Hania Al-Hallaq (Medical Physics) has been elected a Fellow of the Association. The category of Fellow honors members who have distinguished themselves by their contributions in research, education, or leadership in the medical physics community. Dr. Al-Hallaq received her PhD in Medical Physics from the University of Chicago. She has been a faculty member at the University of Chicago for 15 years, becoming an Associate Professor in 2015. Throughout this time, she has taught two graduate courses annually, and mentored 11 PhD dissertation students and physics residents. In recognition of her efforts to initiate a certificate program, she was appointed Director of the Certificate Program in 2011. To date, she has co-authored 49 publications and four book chapters focusing on IGRT for breast radiotherapy and the use of radiomics to detect radiation treatment-related toxicities. She has served as PI on three clinical trials for NRG/Alliance. Her AAPM service includes presenting multiple educational seminars, membership in 8 committees, and chairing TG-302 and the Medical Physics Residency Training and Promotion subcommittee. Nationally, Dr. Al-Hallaq serves as an examiner for the ABR, an Associate Editor for the Red Journal, and as a board member of SDAMPP.


Congratulations to Associate Professor Megan McNerney, MD, PhD (Department of Pathology, Committees on Cancer Biology and Genetics, Genomics and Systems Biology) on her recognition with the Faculty Award for Excellence in Graduate Teaching and Mentoring https://news.uchicago.edu/story/2020-quantrell-and-graduate-teaching-awards

Joy Bergelson 04/30/2020

Six University of Chicago scholars were elected to the American Academy of Sciences, including Prof. Joy Bergelson, the James D. Watson Distinguished Service Professor in Ecology and Evolution and chair of the Department of Ecology and Evolution. 

Research in her lab is best known for dispelling the long-held belief in the field that arms-race dynamics typify the evolution of plant resistance to microbial pathogens in nature. An early researcher in research on the plant Arabidopsis thaliana​, particularly from an evolutionary and ecological perspective, Bergelson and her group completed the first experiments using genetically manipulated plants to disentangle the mechanisms driving observed evolutionary dynamics. They also have pioneered research at the interface of ecology and evolution, namely eco-evolutionary dynamics.

Through her international collaborations, Bergelson has been instrumental in developing genome-wide association mapping in Arabidopsis, providing resources to the community and ultimately leading to the 1001 Genomes project.

Susan Kidwell with shells 04/01/2020

Professor Susan Kidwell, a longtime member of the Committee on Evolutionary Biology and the William Rainey Harper Professor of Geophysical Sciences, will be awarded the 2020 Paleontological Society Medal. The medal is "the most prestigious honor bestowed by the Society, reflecting the objectives and standards of the Society. It is awarded to a person whose eminence is based on advancement of knowledge in paleontology."

Susan has advanced knowledge in the field on many fronts, but a common theme has been understanding how the fossil record forms, and its implications for how we study the history of life on Earth and the record of sedimentary environments.

For more information, please see the announcement on CEB's website.


Congratulations to Assistant Professor A. Murat Eren (Mircrobiology) who has been named as a 2020 Sloan Fellow for showing promise as an early career scientist. 

Meren's research focuses on understanding the ecology and evolution of microbial populations through computational strategies and molecular approaches. He and his group also work to develop anvi'o, an open source platform that provides analytical tools and visualizations to allow for a better understanding of the data about microbiology.

Learn more about his award and research at UChicago News


Congratulations to Professor Cathryn Nagler (Immunology) who has been selected as a distinguished  fellow of the American Association of Immunologists.

Nagler is known for her contributions as one of the first immunologists to identify the link between intestinal bacteria and the regulation of immunity. She now works on treating food allergies by developing microbiome-modulating therapeutics.

Learn more about her award and research on the Pritzker School of Molecular Engineering website.


Sliman Bensmaia has been named the James and Karen Frank Professor in the Department of Organismal Biology and Anatomy and the College. Bensmaia’s research is focused on the study of sensory information and how it is encoded in the nervous system. This research has exciting implications for the development of prosthetic limbs that have the potential to recreate the sense of touch for patients who have lost it. 

Lucy Godley has been named the first Hospira Foundation Professor in the Departments of Medicine and Human Genetics. The Godley lab researches bone marrow malignancies, including leukemias, lymphomas, and multiple myeloma. Godley’s research is providing new insights into her patient’s diseases and thus offering them new treatment options.

Diane Lauderdale has been named the Louis Block Professor in the Department of Public Health Sciences and the College. Lauderdale is the Chair of the Department of Public Health Sciences and her research focuses on epidemiology. Specifically she looks at how behavioral and social factors influence health. Recently she has focused on sleep and how it affects middle aged adults based on their racial, socio-economic, and gender disparities. 

Matthew Stephens has been named the Ralph W. Gerard Professor in the Departments of Statistics and Human Genetics and the College. Stephens works at the interface between genetics and statistics, his group develops novel methodologies, including software tools and statistical models that are widely used in the field.

Learn more about their accomplishments at UChicago News


Congratulations to Professor Tatyana Golovkina (Microbiology) and Melina Hale (William Rainey Harper Professor in the Department of Organismal Biology and Anatomy; the College; and a Vice Provost at UChicago) who have been elected to the American Association for the Advancement of Science. 

Tatyana Golovkina researches the immune system and was elected for "distinguished contributions to the field of resistance and susceptibility to retroviruses using mouse genetics to identify novel genes and the role of the microbiome."

Melina Hale focuses on neuroscience and biomechanics and was elected for "contributions to biomechanics and sensorimotor integration, particularly for innovative studies of neural circuits, proprioception and mechanosensation, as integrated in vertebrate locomotion and behavior."

Learn more about their award and contributions at UChicago News.


Assistant Professor Xiaochang Zhang (Human Genetics) has received a National Institutes of Health (NIH) Director's New Innovator Award for 2019. Zhang's research focuses on neocortex development. More specifically, he and his lab work to understand how brain cells change under neurological conditions and how they are specified over time. 

Learn more about his award and research at the Forefront.

Instagram Facebook Youtube