Meet the 2011 MacArthur Fellows

  • Profile portrait of Jad Abumrad

    Jad Abumrad

    Radio Host and Producer

    Engaging a new generation of listeners with audio explorations of scientific and philosophical questions that evoke a sense of adventure and recreate the thrill of discovery.

  • Profile portrait of Marie-Therese Connolly

    Marie-Therese Connolly

    Elder Rights Lawyer

    Raising awareness about and seeking solutions to the largely hidden but immense problems of elder abuse and neglect.

  • Profile portrait of Roland Fryer

    Roland Fryer


    Offering new insight into such issues as racial discrimination, labor market inequalities, and educational underachievement and illuminating the causes and consequences of economic disparity in American society.

  • Profile portrait of Jeanne Gang

    Jeanne Gang


    Integrating conventional materials, striking yet functional designs, and ecologically friendly technology in bold structures that challenge the aesthetic and technical possibilities of the art form.

  • Profile portrait of Elodie Ghedin

    Elodie Ghedin


    Decoding the genomes of virulent human pathogens that cause such diseases as leishmaniasis, sleeping sickness, and river blindness and threaten the lives of millions in the developing world.

  • Profile portrait of Markus Greiner

    Markus Greiner

    Condensed Matter Physicist

    Improving our capacity to control the spatial organization of ultra-cold atoms and applying these advances to both fundamental inquiry and technology.

  • Profile portrait of Kevin Guskiewicz

    Kevin Guskiewicz

    Sports Medicine Researcher

    Combining laboratory and on-the-field investigations to advance the diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of sports-related brain injuries and to improve the safety of athletes of all ages.

  • Profile portrait of Peter Hessler

    Peter Hessler

    Long-Form Journalist

    Crafting keenly observed accounts of ordinary people responding to the complexities of life in such rapidly changing societies as Reform Era China.

  • Profile portrait of Tiya Miles

    Tiya Miles

    Public Historian

    Reframing and reinterpreting the history of our diverse nation in works that illuminate the complex interrelationships between African and Cherokee peoples in colonial America. 

  • Profile portrait of Matthew Nock

    Matthew Nock

    Clinical Psychologist

    Deepening understanding of self-injury and suicide among adolescents and adults by combining epidemiology, laboratory experiments, and real-time psychological assessments in the interest of saving lives and influencing mental health care in our society.

  • Profile portrait of Francisco Núñez

    Francisco Núñez

    Choral Conductor and Composer

    Shaping the future of choral singing for children by expanding access from inner-city to elite schools and redefining the artistic and expressive boundaries of the youth choir.

  • Profile portrait of Sarah Otto

    Sarah Otto

    Evolutionary Geneticist

    Addressing fundamental questions of population and evolutionary biology, such as why some species reproduce sexually and why some species carry more than one copy of each gene.

  • Profile portrait of Shwetak Patel

    Shwetak Patel

    Sensor Technologist and Computer Scientist

    Inventing low-cost, easy-to-deploy sensor systems that leverage existing infrastructures to enable users to track household energy consumption and to make the buildings we live in more responsive to our needs.

  • Profile portrait of Dafnis Prieto

    Dafnis Prieto

    Jazz Percussionist and Composer

    Electrifying audiences with dazzling technical abilities and rhythmically adventurous compositions while infusing Latin jazz with a bold new energy and sound.

  • Profile portrait of Kay Ryan

    Kay Ryan


    Composing deceptively simple verse of wisdom and elegance, grounded in explorations of familiar ideas and experiences, and surprising us with the possibilities of the medium.

  • Profile portrait of Melanie Sanford

    Melanie Sanford

    Organometallic Chemist

    Reigniting research on an important chemical pathway and developing methods to enable modification of complex molecules with important implications for pharmaceuticals and other products we use everyday. 

  • Profile portrait of William Seeley

    William Seeley


    Integrating microscopy, magnetic resonance imaging, and clinical examination to identify the mechanisms underlying frontotemporal dementia, track disease progression, and create effective therapeutic interventions.

  • Profile portrait of Jacob Soll

    Jacob Soll

    European Historian

    Exploring the development of political thought and criticism in early modern Europe and shedding new light on the origins of the modern state. 

  • Profile portrait of A. E. Stallings

    A. E. Stallings

    Poet and Translator

    Mining the classical world and traditional poetic techniques to craft imaginative explorations of contemporary life that evoke startling insights about antiquity’s relevance for today.

  • Profile portrait of Ubaldo Vitali

    Ubaldo Vitali

    Conservator and Silversmith

    Drawing on deep knowledge of past and modern metalworking techniques and rigorous scholarship to restore historical masterworks and to create original works of art.

  • Profile portrait of Alisa Weilerstein

    Alisa Weilerstein


    Combining technical precision with impassioned musicianship in performances of both traditional and contemporary music and expanding the cello repertoire through collaborations with leading composers.

  • Profile portrait of Yukiko Yamashita

    Yukiko Yamashita

    Developmental Biologist

    Unraveling the complex molecular choreography of stem cell division and investigating how factors such as aging affect the capacity of stem cells to replace specialized cells that are injured, infected, or wear out. 


22 New MacArthur Fellows Announced

Working across a broad spectrum of endeavors, the Fellows were selected for their creativity, originality, and potential to make important contributions in the future.
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