Professor Geoffrey Cowan listens during President Obama’s State of the Union address.
© USC Annenberg, Photo Credit: Benjamin Dunn

Cowan named American Academy of Arts & Sciences Fellow

The American Academy of Arts & Sciences announced on April 20 that University Professor and holder of the Annenberg Family Chair in Communication Leadership Geoffrey Cowan is one of its newest Fellows.

The Academy elected leaders in the sciences, the humanities and the arts, business, public affairs, and the nonprofit sector. The 210 new Fellows and 19 Foreign Honorary Members join one of the nation’s most prestigious honorary societies and a center for independent policy research.

"These remarkable men and women have made singular contributions to their fields, and to the world," Academy President Emilio Bizzi said. "By electing them as members, the Academy honors them and their work, and they, in turn, honor us."

The new class will be inducted at a ceremony on Oct.10, at the Academy’s headquarters in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

"It is quite an honor to join an academy that was founded by John Adams in 1780 with the mission of cultivating 'every art and science which may tend to advance the interest, honour, dignity, and happiness of a free, independent, and virtuous people,'" Cowan said. "I'm delighted to join members ranging from Nobel laureates, to (School of Journalism director) Geneva Overholser, to the Coen brothers, and to be included in a class that features Paul Farmer, Pierre Omidyar, Susan Packard Orr, and Nelson Mandela."

"Since 1780, the Academy has served the public good by convening leading thinkers and doers from diverse perspectives to provide practical policy solutions to the pressing issues of the day," said Leslie Berlowitz, Chief Executive Officer and William T. Golden Chair. "I look forward to welcoming into the Academy these new members to help continue that tradition."

The Academy, established in 1780 by founders of the nation, undertakes studies of complex and emerging problems. Current projects focus on science, technology and global security; social policy and American institutions; the humanities and culture; and education. The Academy’s membership of scholars and practitioners from many disciplines and professions gives it a unique capacity to conduct a wide range of interdisciplinary, long-term policy research.

Since its founding by John Adams, James Bowdoin, John Hancock and other scholar-patriots, the Academy has elected as members the finest minds and most influential leaders from each generation, including George Washington and Benjamin Franklin in the eighteenth century, Daniel Webster and Ralph Waldo Emerson in the nineteenth, and Albert Einstein and Winston Churchill in the twentieth. The current membership includes more than 250 Nobel laureates and more than 60 Pulitzer Prize winners.

John Seely Brown, formerly of the USC Annenberg Center, was also named a Fellow.

Complete list of newly elected Fellows
Press Release
American Academy of Arts & Sciences
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