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Dean's Annual Faculty Fund announces inaugural awards

Friday, September 17, 2010 – Ann Claycombe

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The College of Arts and Sciences is pleased to announce the winners of the inaugural Dean’s Annual Faculty Fund prizes: Assistant Professors Sarah Brosnan of Psychology and Donald Hamelberg of Chemistry, and Associate Professor Eddy Nahmias of Philosophy.

The Dean’s Annual Faculty Fund is a new program that awards extra funding to rising faculty stars each year. A vision of the Dean for several years, the fund has materialized due to seed funding from a member of the college's Board of Visitors. The award is designed to help the College of Arts and Sciences attract and retain the best and brightest scholars and researchers. Each recipient will be celebrated at a reception in the early spring and will receive a salary supplement in recognition of their outstanding success.

“The college couldn’t have hoped for a better group of scholars to launch the Dean’s Annual Faculty Fund awards,” said Lauren Adamson, dean of the College of Arts and Sciences. “Each one exemplifies the creativity and accomplishment that we see as a core part of our mission.”

Sarah Brosnan researches cooperation, reciprocity, and responses to inequity in non-human primates, looking for the evolutionary roots of human economic choices. She is the primary investigator on a National Science Foundation grant to compare cooperative choices made by humans, chimpanzees, rhesus macaques and capuchin monkeys. She is also the winner of an NSF CAREER award, the top award given to young scientists by the foundation. Brosnan has also been named a Fellow of the Society of Experimental Social Psychology.

Donald Hamelberg
uses mathematics and physics models to investigate cell signaling pathways. Problems with those pathways have been linked to cancer, as well as a host of other diseases.  Hamelberg is a Georgia Cancer Coalition Distinguished Career Scientist. He has won an NSF CAREER Award, and in 2009 won the American Chemistry Society’s Hewlett Packard Outstanding Junior Faculty Award.

Eddy Nahmias is currently working on a book titled “Rediscovering Free Will.” The concept of free will is central to his work - what it is, how to study it, and how it accords with scientific accounts of human nature. Nahmias believes that free will is closely linked with the brain’s abilities for self-knowledge and self control – to wisdom, in other words. In 2008, he won a $100,000 fellowship from the University of Chicago’s Templeton Foundation for a project called “Defining Wisdom.”

Brosnan, Hamelberg and Nahmias.