Award Recipients


AubryAlexandros Makriyannis, Professor, George D. Behrakis Endowed Chair, and Director of the Center for Drug Discovery

Professor Makriyannis is the intellectual force behind Northeastern’s world-renowned Center for Drug Discovery, where he serves as director. With dual appointments in the Departments of Chemistry and Pharmaceutical Sciences, he has fostered an interdisciplinary approach to drug development. He has created novel methods for target-based drug discovery while also inventing compounds that have potential as medications, shaping therapeutic drug development for neuropathic pain, drug addiction, and metabolic disorders. Widely respected for his mentoring of students and fellow faculty, Professor Makriyannis is the principal investigator on eight National Institutes of Health grants. He was recently awarded a National Merit Award, his second, from NIH’s National Institute on Drug Abuse.

AubryJonathan Tilly, Professor and Chair of the Department of Biology

An international leader in reproductive biology, Professor Tilly was a professor of obstetrics and gynecology at Harvard Medical School and led the Vincent Center for Reproductive Biology at Massachusetts General Hospital before joining Northeastern in 2013. As chair of Northeastern’s biology department and founder of the company OvaScience, he has provided hope of conception to infertile women through his pioneering research into ovarian stem cells. His patent portfolio, publication output, and research funding are exceptional in quality and scope. Professor Tilly’s many honors include a publication award from the American Society for Reproductive Medicine and the Richard E. Weitzman Memorial Award for Achievements in the Field of Endocrinology.



Nadine Aubry, Dean, College of Engineering
A widely known leader in the field of mechanical engineering, particularly fluid mechanics, Dean Nadine Aubry was elected a member of the National Academy of Engineering in 2011. Among her many awards are the Presidential Young Investigator Award from the National Science Foundation, the Ralph R. Teetor Educational Award from the Society of Automotive Engineers, and selection as a fellow of the American Physical Society and the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics. She is currently chair of the American Physical Society Division of Fluid Dynamics and has been invited to give numerous seminars, keynote speeches, and distinguished lectures around the world.


Arun Bansil,Professor of Physics
An expert in theoretical condensed matter physics, Professor Bansil received his doctorate from Harvard in 1974 and joined the physics faculty at Northeastern in 1976. His research focuses on the electronic structure and spectroscopy of complex ordered and disordered systems, including novel superconductors, manganites, and topological insulators. He served a two-year appointment at the U.S. Department of Energy managing the theoretical condensed matter physics program. He has been an honorary professor at Tampere University of Technology in Finland, a guest senior scientist at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, a scientific consultant at the Netherlands Energy Research Foundation, and a resident associate at Argonne National Laboratory.


Albert-László Barabási, Distinguished Professor of Physics and Robert Gray Dodge Professor of Network Science
An internationally recognized pioneer in network science, Professor Barabási founded and directs Northeastern’s Center for Complex Network Research, the foremost center in the field. His research led to the discovery of scale-free networks and the Barabási-Albert model explaining the widespread emergence of networks in natural, technological, and social systems that range from cellphones to the Web and online communities. His work on complex networks has received widespread attention, including the covers of Nature, Science News, and many other publications. His impressive scholarly work has been funded by the National Institutes of Health, the U.S. Army Research Laboratory, and the U.S. Department of Defense


Ahmed Busnaina, Dr. William Lincoln Smith Professor
Professor Busnaina is a world-renowned scholar and the director of the National Science Foundation-funded Nanoscale Science and Engineering Center for High-rate Nanomanufacturing. His research focuses on directed assembly used in the manufacturing of nanoscale structures for applications in energy, electronics, biomedicine, and materials. Research support has exceeded $44 million. Professor Busnaina has served as a consultant on microcontamination and particle adhesion issues to the semiconductor industry. An author of more than 420 papers in journals, proceedings, and conferences, he is also a fellow of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers and the Adhesion Society and a Fulbright Senior Scholar.


Arthur Coury, Professor of Chemical Engineering
An award-winning expert on biomaterials for medical products, Professor Coury holds more than 50 patents and is an elected member of the National Academy of Engineering, a fellow of the American Chemical Society, and a fellow of the American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering. He was vice president of biomaterials research at Genzyme Corp., has been a visiting professor at the University of Trento, Italy, and has been an invited lecturer at more than 30 universities. Professor Coury’s tireless service to his field includes serving as president for the Society for Biomaterials and as president of the American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering.


Stephen W. Director, Provost and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs
Stephen W. Director is a member of the U.S. National Academy of Engineering and a fellow of the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers and the American Society for Engineering Education. He has served as chair of the National Academy of Engineering Committee on Engineering Education, and serves on numerous other boards and committees and as a consultant to industry, government, and academia. Provost Director has published more than 150 papers and authored or co-authored six texts. He has earned worldwide recognition and awards for his research and educational contributions. In 2002, he was named honorary professor of Shanghai Jiao Tong University by the Chinese Ministry of Education.


Terry Fulmer, Dean, Bouvé College of Health Sciences
Dean Terry Fulmer is an elected member of the Institute of Medicine and currently serves as vice chair of the New York Academy of Medicine. Nationally recognized as a leading expert in geriatrics, she is best known for her research on the topic of elder abuse and neglect, which has been funded by the National Institute on Aging and the National Institute for Nursing Research. Dean Fulmer is a fellow in the American Academy of Nursing, the Gerontological Society of America, and the New York Academy of Medicine. She is currently a member of the Geriatrics and Gerontology Advisory Committee for the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.


Vinod Sahney, Professor of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering
Professor Sahney is one of the world’s foremost authorities in healthcare systems engineering. His pioneering scholarship focuses on using the principles of systems engineering to improve treatment, patient safety, and quality of care. Professor Sahney served as senior vice president and chief strategy officer of Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts. He is an adjunct professor of health policy and management at the Harvard School of Public Health and senior fellow of the Institute for Healthcare Improvement. He has been elected to the Institute of Medicine and the National Academy of Engineering.


Lisa Feldman Barrett, Distinguished Professor of Psychology

 A renowned psychologist, Professor Barrett focuses on the nature of emotion through the lenses of psychology and neuroscience. Her Interdisciplinary Affective Science Lab incorporates methods from social, clinical, and personality psychology; psychophysiology; cognitive science; cognitive neuroscience; and visual cognition. She is a research neuroscientist in the Massachusetts General Hospital Psychiatric Neuroimaging Research Program and at the Martinos Center for Biomedical Imaging. Her impressive scholarly work is supported by grants from the National Science Foundation, National Institutes of Health, and Army Research Institute. Professor Barrett is an Elected Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

Phil Brown, Distinguished Professor of Sociology and Health Sciences

Professor Brown is an internationally known scholar whose interdisciplinary research in medical sociology addresses environmental justice and social movements, mental health, and the health consequences and social impacts of environmental hazards. He is a widely published expert, and his research has been continuously funded by the National Institutes of Health and the National Science Foundation. Professor Brown founded Hospitals for a Healthy Environment and regularly assists state and federal agencies concerned with understanding and remediating environmental contamination.

Andrei Zelevinsky, Professor of Mathematics (awarded posthumously)

A brilliant mathematician, Professor Andrei Zelevinsky passed away soon after being selected for this distinction. His vision and the impact on his field will endure, as will the university's respect and gratitude for his scholarship, intelligence, and friendship.

Professor Zelevinsky’s colleagues at Northeastern and universities around the world regarded him as a “towering figure in modern algebra and representation theory” whose work created whole new areas of mathematical research. His work was funded by the National Science Foundation since his arrival at Northeastern in 1991. He was a Humboldt Research Award winner in 2004 and elected a fellow of the American Mathematical Society in 2012. In addition to his scholarly accomplishments, Professor Zelevinsky helped organize The Math Circle, which continues to bring research-level mathematicians into the classrooms of K–12 students.


Richard Daynard, Professor of Law

Vladimir Torchilin, Distinguished Professor of Pharmaceutical Sciences


William Dickens, Professor of Economics

Judith Hall, Professor of Psychology

Sheila Puffer, Professor and Cherry Family Senior Fellow of International Business

Vincent Harris, William Lincoln Smith Chair Professor in Electrical and Computer Engineering

Kim Lewis, Professor of Biology

Professor Torchilin, an internationally recognized, highly distinguished scholar, has made extraordinary contributions in the fields of nanomedicine, drug delivery, enzymology, and immunology.
In 2010, he was the world’s second most-cited researcher in the fields of pharmacology and toxicology. His numerous awards
from the National Institutes of Health include a $13.5 million National Cancer Institute Center of Cancer Nanotechnology Excellence grant to create commercially viable nanoparticle-based cancer treatments.