SAN FRANCISCO -- Charles M. Vest, president emeritus of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, has been awarded the 2006 AAAS Philip Hauge Abelson Prize for his outstanding contributions to public policy, education and university research.
While serving as president of MIT from 1990 to 2004, Vest worked to strengthen federal-university-industry relations and helped bring education and research issues to broader public attention. He put special emphasis on undergraduate education in science and engineering and also stressed the importance of racial and cultural diversity among faculty and students at MIT.
Vest, who has been nominated to be the next president of National Academy of Engineering, has served on numerous high-level commissions and study panels dealing with important national issues. He chaired the President's Advisory Committee on the Redesign of the Space Station and serves on the President's Committee of Advisors on Science and Technology. He chaired the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Task Force on the Future of DOE Science Programs, was vice chair of the Council on Competitiveness for eight years, and is a past chair of the Association of American Universities.
Vest also served as a member of the Commission on Intelligence Capabilities of the United States Regarding Weapons of Mass Destruction and on the U.S. Secretary of Education's Commission on the Future of Education. He now serves on an advisory committee on transformational diplomacy for the U.S. Secretary of State and on the Secure Borders and Open Doors Advisory Committee of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.
The Abelson Prize was inspired by Philip Hauge Abelson, who served as long-time senior adviser to AAAS, the American Association for the Advancement of Science, and editor of the Association's journal, Science. Abelson, who also served as president of the Carnegie Institution of Washington, died 1 August 2004, following more than 60 y
Contact: Lonnie Shekhtman
American Association for the Advancement of Science