25 MacArthur Fellows Announced by the MacArthur Foundation

CHICAGO (September 20, 2005) – The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation today named 25 new MacArthur Fellows for 2005. Each received a phone call from the Foundation this week informing them that they will be given $500,000 in “no strings attached” support over the next five years.

MacArthur Fellows are selected for their creativity, originality, and potential. By providing resources without stipulations or reporting requirements, the MacArthur Foundation offers the opportunity for Fellows to accelerate their current activities or take their work in new directions. The unusual level of independence afforded to the Fellows underscores the spirit of freedom intrinsic to creative endeavors.

“The call can be life-changing, coming as it does out of the blue and offering highly creative women and men the gift of time and the unfettered opportunity to explore, create, and contribute,” said Jonathan F. Fanton, president of the MacArthur Foundation.
Recipients this year include:

  • a molecular biologist reconstructing the emergence of multicellular organisms from unicellular life (Nicole King)
  • a sculptor integrating architecture and the optical effects of color and light into exquisitely constructed, contemplative spaces (Teresita Fernández)
  • a pharmacist reducing preventable drug and drug delivery errors in the healthcare industry (Michael Cohen)
  • a laser physicist engineering state-of-the-art lasers for novel and important applications in such fields as environmental monitoring, medicine, industry, and communications (Claire Gmachl)
  • a conservation biologist protecting endangered, diverse and previously unknown plants and animals of Madagascar (Steven Goodman)
  • a violinmaker producing new and world-class instruments for the twenty-first century (Joseph Curtin)
  • a clinician/researcher translating findings on the molecular genetics of breast cancer in African and African-American women into innovative clinical practices in the United States and abroad (Olufunmilayo Olopade)
  • a rare book preservationist raising the profile of the book as one of humankind’s greatest inventions (Terry Belanger)
  • a photographer using the personalizing power of portraiture to bring the faces of the world’s displaced into focus (Fazel Sheikh)
  • a fisherman fusing the roles of applied scientist and lobsterman to respond to increasing threats to the fishery ecosystem (Ted Ames)