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Prof. John Donohue Elected to American Academy of Arts & Sciences

Leighton Homer Surbeck Professor of Law John J. Donohue III has been elected to the American Academy of Arts & Sciences, one of the nation’s most prestigious honorary societies and a center for independent policy research. Professor Donohue is among 210 new Fellows and 19 Foreign Honorary Members elected to the class of 2009. Considered leaders in their field, the new members are chosen from the mathematical and physical sciences; biological sciences; social sciences; humanities and arts; and public affairs, business, and administration.

“John Donohue is an extraordinary economist and legal scholar whose signal accomplishments include path-breaking empirical analyses in a broad range of policy areas, from crime control to employment discrimination to civil rights, said Yale Law School Acting Dean Kate Stith. “His election to the American Academy is high recognition of his scholarly pre-eminence.”

The Academy, founded in 1780 by John Adams, James Bowdoin, John Hancock, and other scholar-patriots, undertakes studies of complex and emerging problems through interdisciplinary, long-term policy research. Its members include 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.

Along with Professor Donohue, seven other Yale faculty members were elected this year: Peter Aronson, C.N.H. Long Professor of Internal Medicine; Alan Gerber, Professor of Political Science and Fellow at the Institute for Social and Policy Studies; Mark Johnson, Arthur T. Kemp Professor of Chemistry; Dale Basil Martin, Woolsey Professor of Religious Studies; Haun Saussy, Bird White Housum Professor of Comparative Literature; Emilie Townes, Andrew F. Mellon Professor of African American Religion and Theology; and Ruth Bernard Yeazell, Chace Family Professor of English.

The 2009 class also includes such luminaries as pathologist Peter Nowell, who revolutionized the understanding of the genetic basis of cancer; astronomer Eric Becklin, whose pioneering infrared observations led to the first glimpse of the nucleus of the Milky Way; author Thomas Pynchon; actors Dustin Hoffman, James Earl Jones, and Judith Dench; U.S. Court of Appeals Judge J. Harvie Wilkinson III; South African Constitutional Court Justice Kate O’Regan; U.S. Secretary of Defense Robert Gates; NPR journalist Susan Stamberg; 1993 Nobel Peace Prize laureate Nelson Mandela; and U2 lead singer and advocate for humanitarian causes, Bono.

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

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

More information, including the list of newly-elected Fellows and Foreign Honorary Members, is available on the American Academy of Arts & Sciences website.