2021 Eminent Scholar Recepient

Dr. Valerie M. Hudson, Ph.D.

2021 Eminent Scholar Recipient

Dr. Valerie M. Hudson is a University Distinguished Professor and holds the George H.W. Bush Chair in the Department of International Affairs at the Bush School of Government and Public Service at Texas A&M, where she directs the Program on Women, Peace, and Security. She has previously taught at Brigham Young, Northwestern, and Rutgers universities. Her research foci include foreign policy analysis, security studies, gender and international relations, and methodology. In addition to an extensive publication record in preeminent journals, Dr. Hudson is the author or editor of several books, including (with Andrea Den Boer) Bare Branches: The Security Implications of Asia’s Surplus Male Population (MIT Press, 2004), which won the American Association of Publishers Award for the Best Book in Political Science, and the Otis Dudley Duncan Award for Best Book in Social Demography, resulting in feature stories in the New York Times, The Economist, 60 Minutes, and other news publications. Dr. Hudson’s book Sex and World Peace, co-authored with Bonnie Ballif-Spanvill, Mary Caprioli and Chad Emmett, and published by Columbia University Press, was listed by Gloria Steinem in 2014 as one of the top three books on her “Reading Our Way to the Revolution” list. Emma Watson chose Sex and World Peace as the inaugural reading for her book club and interviewed Hudson for Teen Vogue about it in 2020. Her latest coauthored book, with Donna Lee Bowen and Perpetua Lynne Nielsen, is The First Political Order: How Sex Shapes Governance and National Security Worldwide, was published in 2020 with Columbia University Press, and has already been nominated for several awards.

 

Dr. Hudson has won numerous research and teaching awards, including an inaugural Andrew Carnegie Fellowship as well as an inaugural Fulbright Distinguished Chair in the Arts, Humanities, and Social Sciences at Australian National University (2017). She has been selected as the Distinguished Scholar Award recipient for 2022 by the Political Demography and Geography Section (PDG/ISA) of the International Studies Association. Most notably, Dr. Hudson is a co-founder and Principal Investigator of The WomanStats Project (https://womanstats.org), which includes the largest compilation of data on the status of women in the world today, and is used by scholars, policymakers, students, and advocates alike. Through The WomanStats Project, Dr. Hudson has closely mentored over 150 students as research assistants, with many now having careers in government, academia, and business. She has helped develop a Gender-Lens Curriculum for the teaching of International Development, funded by the USDA.

 

Dr. Hudson is the president of a 501(c)3 organization producing peer-reviewed research on Cystic Fibrosis; she served in the 11th Special Forces U.S. Army Reserve as a wheeled vehicle and power generator mechanic, is a cofounder of the LDS National Security Society, and has been a La Leche League Leader for over 33 years.

2021 Eminent Scholar Recipient

Dr. Karen L. Wooley holds the W. T. Doherty-Welch Chair in Chemistry and is a University Distinguished Professor and Presidential Impact Fellow at Texas A&M, with appointments in the Departments of Chemistry, Chemical Engineering and Materials Science & Engineering. She also serves as Director of the Laboratory for Synthetic-Biologic Interactions. Dr. Wooley previously taught at Washington University in St. Louis, Missouri, where she was a James S. McDonnell Distinguished University Professor in Arts & Sciences. Her research interests include the synthesis and characterization of degradable polymers derived from natural products, unique macromolecular architectures and complex polymer assemblies, and the design and development of well-defined nanostructured materials. Dr. Wooley has designed synthetic strategies to harness the rich compositional, regiochemical and stereochemical complexity of natural products for the construction of hydrolytically-degradable polymers, which have impact toward sustainability, reduction of reliance on petrochemicals, and production of biologically-beneficial and environmentally-benign natural products upon degradation - these materials are expected to impact the global issue of plastic pollution and address challenges resulting from climate change. The development of novel synthetic strategies, fundamental study of physicochemical and mechanical properties, and investigation of the functional performance of her materials in the diagnosis and treatment of disease, as superabsorbent hydrogels to address global challenges associated with excessive liquid water, as non-toxic anti-biofouling or anti-icing coatings, as materials for microelectronics device applications, and as environmental remediation systems are particular foci of her research activities.

 

Dr. Wooley is the recipient of many awards, including the American Chemical Society Award in Polymer Chemistry (2014), the Royal Society of Chemistry Centenary Prize (2014), and election as a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences (2015), the National Academy of Inventors (2019), the American Association for the Advancement of Science (2020), the American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering (2020), and the National Academy of Sciences (2020). She was recently selected as a recipient of a 2021 Southeastern Conference (SEC) Faculty Achievement Award and was named as the 2021 SEC Professor of the Year. Dr. Wooley has served on the technical advisory boards and served in consulting capacities for several companies, from Fortune 500 companies to start-ups, and law firms. She is the co-founder and President of Sugar Plastics, LLC, and Chief Technology Officer of Teysha Technologies, LTD. Karen currently serves as both an executive editor and an associate editor for the Journal of the American Chemical Society, among many other advisory roles within the broader scientific community.

 

Dr. Wooley has a long-standing commitment to diversity, formally and informally, having served on numerous committees that focus on diversity, equity, and inclusion, while also being dedicated to diversity promoting practices throughout her research, teaching, and service. She has mentored and nominated several female Texas A&M students, faculty, and staff for awards. Dr. Wooley also promotes the career development of female scientists nationally and internationally. For instance, she currently serves as an Executive Editor for the Journal of the American Chemical Society, for which she leads a team of three female and one male associate editors who are located in the U.S., Germany, the Netherlands, and the United Kingdom.

Previous Eminent Scholar Recipients

  • Dr. Jyotsna Vaid, Ph.D., 2020
  • Dr. M. Cynthia Hipwell, 2019
  • Professor Huyen Pham, 2018
  • Yvonna S. Lincoln, 2014
  • Deborah Bell-Pedersen, 2013
  • Dr. Kim Dunbar, 2012

Dr. Karen L. Wooley

2020 Eminent Scholar Recipient

Dr. Jyotsna Vaid

2020 Eminent Scholar Recipient

Dr. Jyotsna Vaid is Professor of Cognition and Cognitive Neuroscience and Women’s and Gender Studies and Director of the Language and Cognition Laboratory at Texas A&M.  Born in New Delhi, India, and raised in upstate New York, Vaid received her undergraduate degree at Vassar College, her doctorate at McGill University, and a post-doctoral fellowship at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies. She joined Texas A&M University as an assistant professor. Vaid became the first woman of color) to attain the rank of full professor in psychology at the university in 2001. Spearheading new directions in research in language and cognition, Vaid was a founding editor of Writing Systems Research and is currently Associate Editor of the Journal of Cultural Cognitive Science. She was also Founding Editor for over ten years of a grassroots feminist publication, the Committee on South Asian Women Bulletin. Through her past administrative service at Texas A&M (on the Women’s Faculty Network, the International Faculty Network, and the ADVANCE Scholar program, and as Acting Director of Women’s and Gender Studies, Interim Director of International Studies, and Director of Organizational Development, Research and Equity at the Office for Diversity), Vaid has been a champion for women faculty, particularly faculty of color.

 

Vaid is the author of three edited books and monographs, 86 scholarly articles, 40 book chapters, and three guest-edited journal issues. She has received numerous honors, including the 2020 Fulbright Canada Research Chair in Brain, Language, and Music at McGill University’s Faculty of Medicine. She is an elected Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the Association for Psychological Science, the Psychonomics Society, and the American Psychological Association’s Society for the Psychology of Women and Society for Experimental and Cognitive Science. Vaid has successfully mentored many women, resulting in a senior mentorship award from Women in Cognitive Science and several awards from Texas A&M. Her experiences as an advocate led her to collaborate on various publications on gender and race in higher education. Within her department, Vaid co-founded, in 2012, the Diversity Science Research Cluster, to create an academic community for scholars who center diversity in their research.

Previous Eminent Scholar Recipients

  • Dr. Cynthia Hipwell, 2019
  • Professor Huyen Pham, 2018
  • Yvonna S. Lincoln, 2014
  • Deborah Bell-Pedersen, 2013
  • Dr. Kim Dunbar, 2012

2019 Eminent Scholar Recipient

Dr. Cynthia Hipwell

Dr. Cynthia Hipwell has been working on nanoscale phenomena technology development for over 20 years. She received her B.S.M.E. from Rice University and her M.S. and Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering from the University of California, Berkeley.

Upon graduation, she went to work at Seagate Technology’s Recording Head Division in Bloomington, Minnesota. During her time at Seagate, Dr. Hipwell held various individual and leadership positions in the areas of reliability, product development, and advanced mechanical and electrical technology development. In these various roles, she has been at the forefront of the creation of new devices, models, and metrology. From a fundamental understanding of nanoscale phenomena and nanotechnology integration to leading the head feasibility demonstration of the radically new recording technology, Heat Assisted Magnetic Recording (HAMR), she conquered many projects. Dr. Hipwell is known as both a technology and business process innovator. She has increased the pace of technology development in her teams through improvements in innovation business processes and, as a leader, creating an environment that encourages and rewards innovation, ownership, teamwork, and excellence. She was elected to the National Academy of Engineering in 2016 for her leadership in the development of technologies to enable areal density increases in hard disk drives. In 2018, she was elected as a Fellow of the National Academy of Inventors.

Dr. Hipwell is currently a Texas A&M Engineering Experiment Station Eminent Professor and Director of INVENT Lab (INnoVation tools and Entrepreneurial New Technology), where she works to help students, faculty, and companies get technology developed and to market faster. Dr. Hipwell started the Grace Hopper Women Innovators Program, has developed and taught innovation and technology development coursework, and is currently working on a student and faculty development program to improve Ph.D. student preparation for impact in the industry. Dr. Hipwell is also active in mentoring, chairing the J. Mike Walker ’66 Mechanical Engineering Mentoring Committee, and mentoring student/faculty teams in technology commercialization programs.

  • Professor Huyen Pham, 2018
  • Yvonna S. Lincoln, 2014
  • Deborah Bell-Pedersen, 2013
  • Dr. Kim Dunbar, 2012