Anthropologist given one of nation's top scientific honors

Kent State University Professor of Anthropology Dr. C. Owen Lovejoy, who is internationally recognized as one of todays preeminent biological anthropologists in the study of human origins, has been elected to membership in the prestigious National Academy of Sciences (NAS) for excellence in original scientific research.

"Dr. Lovejoys pioneering research helped put Kent State on the academic map nationally and internationally, and his outstanding teaching has inspired many of our students to become top scientists in their own right," says Kent State President Lester A. Lefton. "Having this world-class scholar in our midst is a source of tremendous pride for the entire Kent State community and we are thrilled that Dr. Lovejoys stellar career has been recognized with this rare and richly deserved honor."

Membership in the NAS is one of the highest honors given to a scientist in the United States. Past members include Albert Einstein, Robert Oppenheimer and Thomas Edison. Additionally, more than 170 members of the NAS have won the Nobel Prize. Lovejoy becomes the only new member elected this year from Ohio, only the 15th current member of the NAS from an Ohio institution, and only the second member among universities that participate in the Mid-American Conference.

"The academy is pleased to elect Dr. Lovejoy," says Maureen OLeary, director of public information at the National Academies. "We look forward to his induction ceremony next April when he is introduced to his colleagues and signs the registry of membership book that NAS members have signed since 1863."

Lovejoy reconstructed the skeleton of "Lucy" a near-complete fossil of a human ancestor that walked upright more than three million years ago. He also has been active in paleodemography and human origins modeling, including the theory that upright walking was closely tied to monogamous mating in early hominids.

Currently, Lovejoy is one of seven researchers

Contact: Melissa Edler
Kent State University

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