The American Academy of Arts and Sciences — one of the oldest and most prestigious honorary societies and a leading center for independent policy research in the United States — recently announced that Professors Sara Lawrence-Lightfoot and Richard. Murnane have been elected as members of the prestigious organization.
“I am honored to have been elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, especially given the Academy's long history dating back to our nation's birth,” said Murnane. “I look forward to participating in Academy events and learning from its distinguished members.”
Lawrence-Lightfoot shared Murnane’s enthusiasm. "I was thrilled to hear the news of my election to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and deeply honored to be invited to join the distinguished company of leaders and scholars, artists and innovators from around the country and the world. I look forward to the warm fellowship, rigorous discourse, and lifelong learning ahead,” she said.
Since its establishment in 1780, the Academy’s membership, which is nominated and elected by peers, has included scientists and scholars, writers and artists, as well as representatives from the full range of professions and public life. Throughout the Academy’s history, 10,000 fellows have been elected, including such notables as Ben Franklin, Thomas Jefferson, Albert Einstein, and T. S. Eliot.
Overall, the new class — which will be inducted in October at the Academy’s headquarters in Cambridge, Mass. — represents a highly qualified group that includes winners of the Nobel Prize; National Medal of Science; the Lasker Award; the Pulitzer and the Shaw prizes; the Fields Medal; MacArthur and Guggenheim fellowships; the Kennedy Center Honors; and Grammy, Emmy, Academy, and Tony awards. Of the 198 new members elected in 2013, only five are from the field of education, including Murnane and Lawrence-Lightfoot.
“Election to the Academy honors individual accomplishment and calls upon members to serve the public good,” said Academy President Leslie C. Berlowitz. “We look forward to drawing on the knowledge and expertise of these distinguished men and women to advance solutions to the pressing policy challenges of the day.”