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Six Minorities Among MacArthur ‘Geniuses’

Six Minorities Among MacArthur ‘Geniuses’

CHICAGO — Officials at the John D. Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation have announced their 2000 Fellowships — also known as the “genius” awards. The fellowship is a five-year grant to individuals of all ages and from all fields and offers recipients flexibility to pursue their work without reporting requirements.
Individuals cannot apply for this award; they must be nominated. Minority winners include:
Hideo Mabuchi is an assistant physics professor at the California Institute of Technology. Mabuchi, 28, uses optical methods to explore quantum behavior in a noisy environment.
Cecilia Muñoz is vice president of the office of research, advocacy and legislation at the National Council of La Raza. Muñoz, 37, is a leader in immigration and civil  rights policy and is a major force in such issues as the legalization of undocumented immigrants, family-based immigration rights and access to welfare benefits and education.
Gary Urton is an anthropology professor at Columbia University Law  School. Urton, 53, is an Andean scholar whose studies meld ethnography, ethnohistory and ethnoscience. He has made important contributions to a wide range of perplexing issues in Incan mythology, Andean astronomy and cosmology and the Incan system and philosophy of numerical values and relations.
Patricia Williams is a professor at the Columbia University School of Law. Williams, 48, is a thoughtful commentator on race and racism in America. An interdisciplinary legal scholar and public intellectual, she approaches issues of law and social justice in novel ways.
Deborah Willis is curator of exhibitions at the Center for African American History and Culture and the Anacostia Museum at the Smithsonian Institution. Willis, 52, is a historian of photography, a curator and a photographer. For more than 20 years, she has been a leading scholar in the investigation and recovery of the rich legacy of African American photography.
Horng-Tzer Yau is a math professor at Courant Institute of Mathematical Sciences at New York University. Yau, 40, is a mathematician who applies profound mathematical insights and analysis to the explanation of important physical processes.  

— From staff reports

— Photos courtesy of the John D. and Catherine T.  MacArthur  Foundation

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