2 June 2016

Two AAS Members Announced as Finalists for 2016 Blavatnik Awards

This post is adapted from a Blavatnik National Awards for Young Scientists press release.

The Blavatnik National Awards for Young Scientists has announced the 31 National Finalists who will be competing for three spots as the 2016 Blavatnik National Laureates. The Finalists were selected from 308 nominations of outstanding faculty-rank researchers from 148 of the nation’s leading academic and research institutions.

The annual Blavatnik Awards, established by the Blavatnik Family Foundation in 2007 and administered by the New York Academy of Sciences, celebrate exceptional young researchers who drive the next generation of scientific innovation by answering the most complex scientific questions of today. The three National Laureates will be announced in June 2016 and will each receive an unrestricted cash prize of $250,000, the largest prize of its kind for early-career scientists. This year's finalists include two AAS members:

David Charbonneau, Harvard University, made the first detections of a transiting exoplanet, exoplanet atmosphere, and light emitted from an exoplanet. He also pioneered numerous methods to discover and characterize exoplanets that have become standards in the field.
Jenny Greene, Princeton University and newly elected AAS Councilor, is an astrophysicist who has made important contributions to the observational studies of black holes, their lifecycles, and their role in galaxy evolution. She has made several discoveries of relationships between the properties of black holes and their host galaxies.

One award will be presented in each of three disciplines — Life Sciences, Physical Sciences & Engineering, and Chemistry. The National Laureates and Finalists will be honored at an annual awards ceremony on Monday, 12 September, at the American Museum of Natural History in New York City. In addition, the New York Academy of Sciences and the Blavatnik Family Foundation will host the third annual Blavatnik Science Symposium 18-19 July featuring research of the 2016 National Finalists and Blavatnik Awards honorees from previous years. The event will include members of the Blavatnik Awards National Jury and Scientific Advisory Council, as well as other scientific luminaries.