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News Release 13-016

President Obama Awards Nation's Top Scientists and Innovators Highest Honor

Almost all awardees have received NSF support at some point in their research careers

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Photo of the front of the national medal of science

The National Medal of Science was first presented 50 years ago by President John F. Kennedy.

Credit: NSF

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Chemist Allen Bard, 2011 National Medal of Science Laureate, has spent his entire career at the University of Texas at Austin. His work include three books, more than 800 peer-reviewed research papers, 75 book chapters, 23 patents and service as editor-in-chief of the Journal of the American Chemical Society for nearly two decades.

Credit: National Science Foundation


Theoretical physicist and arms control expert Sidney Drell, 2011 National Medal of Science Laureate, contributed greatly to sciencespecifically to quantum field theory and quantum chromodynamicsas well as to the application of science by serving as a distinguished advisor to the U.S. Government on security and intelligence.

Credit: National Science Foundation


Theoretical physicist Sylvester James Gates, 2011 National Medal of Science Laureate, devotes his career to making science accessible to the general public.

Credit: National Science Foundation


Mathematician and engineer Solomon Wolf Golomb, 2011 National Medal of Science Laureate, is best known to the general public and fans of mathematical games as the inventor of polyominoes, the inspiration for the computer game Tetris. He specializes in problems of combinatorial analysis, number theory, coding theory and communications.

Credit: National Science Foundation


Solid-state physicist John B. Goodenough, 2011 National Medal of Science Laureate, is known for developing lightweight rechargeable batteries now ubiquitous in today's portable electronic devices.

Credit: National Science Foundation


Biologist Leroy Hood, a 2011 National Medal of Science Laureate, is recognized as one of the world's leading scientists in molecular biotechnology and genomics. His development of the DNA sequencer, DNA synthesizer and other instruments resulted in the successful mapping of the human genome that revolutionized biomedicine and forensic science.

Credit: National Science Foundation


Lucy Shapiro is a 2011 National Medal of Science Laureate. While proud of her work in genetics on cancer research, she is most proud of her four grandchildren, to whom she gives advice on following your passion.

Credit: National Science Foundation


Psychologist Anne Treisman, 2011 National Medal of Science Laureate, proposed revolutionary ideas that had an enormous impact inside and outside of psychology, including the Feature Integration Theory of attention, which inspired thousands of experiments in cognitive psychology, vision sciences, cognitive science, neuropsychology and cognitive neuroscience.

Credit: National Science Foundation