Dr. Huda Zoghbi to receive 2009 Vilcek Prize in biomedical research
Feb 9, 2009 - 4:59:36 AM
Internationally renowned scientist Dr. Huda Zoghbi, a pioneer in the study of Rett Syndrome and related autism spectrum disorders, will receive the 2009 Vilcek Prize in biomedical science. We have been awarding these prizes annually since 2006, said Dr. Jan Vilcek, President and Cofounder of the Vilcek Foundation, and this year I'm proud to announce the expansion of our awards program with the Vilcek Prize for Creative Promise, to recognize the successes of foreign-born individuals in the early stages of their careers in the arts and biomedical sciences. Biologist Dr. Howard Chang has been named the first Creative Promise Prize recipient in biomedical science.
Of the new prize category, Marica Vilcek, Vice President and Cofounder of the Vilcek Foundation, explained, We have always wanted to honor and publicize the contributions of a younger generation of immigrants working in the arts and sciences, to help them maximize their potential. Jan and I were in the early stages of our careers when we immigrated to the United States, and the professional support we received here was pivotal to our success. The Vilcek Prizes for Creative Promise are presented to foreign-born individuals, 38 years old or younger, in the fields of biomedical science and the arts.
At the awards presentation, to be held at the Mandarin Oriental Hotel in New York City, Thursday, April 2, 2009, Dr. Zoghbi and Mike Nichols, the 2009 recipient of the Vilcek Prize in the arts, will each receive a $50,000 cash award and a commemorative trophy created by designer Stefan Sagmeister. Creative Promise Prize winners Dr. Chang and Ham Tran, the 2009 recipient of the Vilcek Prize for Creative Promise in the arts, will each receive a $25,000 cash award and a plaque, also designed by Mr. Sagmeister.
The Vilcek Foundation, in meeting its primary purpose, to call attention to the accomplishments of immigrants currently working in United States, also serves to remind the public of the immeasurable contributions of the foreign-born to this country throughout its history. Dr. Vilcek points out, Much of the advancement of science in the United States from the first half of the twentieth century onward rests on the achievements of foreign-born individuals. The outstanding work of this year's science honoree, Dr. Huda Zoghbi, underscores the importance of remembering this fact.
This year's Vilcek Prize recipients demonstrate the truly global influence of America's immigrants: Mike Nichols was born in Berlin, Germany; Dr. Huda Zoghbi in Beirut, Lebanon; Ham Tran in Saigon, Vietnam; and Dr. Howard Chang, in Taipei, Taiwan.
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