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News Release 96-085

Twenty NSF-Nominated Scientists and Engineers Receive Top Presidential Honor

December 16, 1996

This material is available primarily for archival purposes. Telephone numbers or other contact information may be out of date; please see current contact information at media contacts.

President Clinton has named 20 young, independent researchers nominated by the National Science Foundation (NSF) to receive the first annual Presidential Early Career Awards for Scientists and Engineers (PECASE).

The new awards, created last spring, recognize 60 outstanding scientists and engineers from across the federal government. These researchers have demonstrated excellence and promise in scientific or engineering research, as well as the potential for eventual leadership in their respective fields.

The PECASE awards, according to the president's Office of Science and Technology Policy, represent the highest honor bestowed by the U.S. government on young professionals whose talents and potential are so great that they are expected to emerge as leaders on the frontiers of science and engineering during the next century. The awards embody the government's high priority of maintaining U.S. leadership in science by producing a prominent cadre of scientists and engineers and encouraging their continued development.

NSF's recognition includes grants of up to $500,000 over a five-year period for individual recipients of this presidential award. Awardees are faculty members known for accomplishments in research, education, and service to the public.

These scientific and engineering leaders will serve as advisors to the president on emerging and developing trends and discoveries in their fields. Their contributions are also expected to foster other innovative and far-reaching developments in science and technology, increase awareness of career potential in science and engineering, and highlight the importance of science and technology for the nation's future.

NSF-nominated PECASE winners include:

  • David T. Burke, University of Michigan, development of genetics technology
  • Erick M. Carreira, California Institute of Technology, organic chemistry synthesis
  • Fengshan Frank Chen, Florida International University, advanced manufacturing systems engineering
  • Peter J. Delfyett Jr., University of Central Florida, optics and electrical engineering
  • Juan J. de Pablo, University of Wisconsin at Madison, fluid properties and chemical engineering
  • Bonnie J. Dorr, University of Maryland, computer science and linguistics
  • Weinan E, New York University, mathematics of complex materials
  • Marc A. Edwards, University of Colorado, corrosion control and environmental engineering
  • Mark A. Gluck, Rutgers University, cognitive neuroscience
  • Marilyn R. Gunner, City College of the City University of New York, biophysics of proteins
  • Daniel P. Hess, University of South Florida, mechanical engineering
  • Robert T. Kennedy, University of Florida, bioanalytical chemistry
  • Michael R. Kremer, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, economics of growth and development
  • Charles M. Marcus, Stanford University, physics of electron conduction
  • Massoud Pedram, University of Southern California, engineering of electronic circuits
  • Ruey-Jen Hwu Sadwick, University of Utah, optoelectronic systems engineering
  • John W. Sutherland, Michigan Technical University, environmentally conscious manufacturing engineering
  • Todd A. Verdoorn, Vanderbilt University Medical Center, neuropharmacology
  • Michael E. Wysession, Washington University, geophysics of seismic boundaries
  • John Yin, Dartmouth College, biochemical engineering


Media Contacts
Bill Noxon, NSF, (703) 306-1070, email:
Rick Borchelt, White House, (202) 456-6018, email:

Program Contacts
Margaret Cavanaugh, NSF, (703) 292-8500, email:

The U.S. National Science Foundation propels the nation forward by advancing fundamental research in all fields of science and engineering. NSF supports research and people by providing facilities, instruments and funding to support their ingenuity and sustain the U.S. as a global leader in research and innovation. With a fiscal year 2023 budget of $9.5 billion, NSF funds reach all 50 states through grants to nearly 2,000 colleges, universities and institutions. Each year, NSF receives more than 40,000 competitive proposals and makes about 11,000 new awards. Those awards include support for cooperative research with industry, Arctic and Antarctic research and operations, and U.S. participation in international scientific efforts.

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