171 scientists, writers, scholars, and artists honored across 48 fields
(New York, NY) On April 5, 2023, the Board of Trustees of the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation approved the awarding of Guggenheim Fellowships to a diverse group of 171 exceptional individuals. Chosen from a rigorous application and peer review process out of almost 2,500 applicants, these successful applicants were appointed on the basis of prior achievement and exceptional promise. To see the full list of new Fellows, please visit www.gf.org.
“Like Emerson, I believe that fullness in life comes from following our calling,” said Edward Hirsch, President of the Guggenheim Foundation and 1985 Fellow in Poetry. “The new class of Fellows has followed their calling to enhance all of our lives, to provide greater human knowledge and deeper understanding. We’re lucky to look to them to bring us into the future.”
In all, 48 scholarly disciplines and artistic fields, 72 different academic institutions, 24 states and the District of Columbia, and two Canadian provinces are represented in this year’s class of Fellows, who range in age from 31 to 85. Close to 50 Fellows have no current full-time college or university affiliation. Many Fellows’ projects directly respond to issues like the lasting effects of the Covid-19 pandemic, democracy and policing, scientific innovation, climate change, and identity.
Generous gifts from friends and previous Fellows have helped support this year’s Fellows.
- The actor and director Robert De Niro has underwritten Lavar Munroe’s Fellowship in Fine Arts in honor of his father, the painter Robert De Niro Sr., a 1968 Guggenheim Fellow. Munroe’s work reflects his upbringing in the Bahamas and considers themes such as resilience, memory, ancestry, and fantasy.
- The Dorothy Tapper Goldman Foundation continues its support of the Fellowship in Constitutional Studies, awarded this year to Edward B. Foley of the Ohio State University. Foley studies election law and constitutional law.
- Wendy Belzberg and Strauss Zelnick have underwritten a Fellowship in General Nonfiction awarded to Abraham Verghese in honor of the writer Stacy Schiff, a 1996 Guggenheim Fellow and Foundation Trustee. Verghese, a physician, is the author of two memoirs and the bestselling novel, Cutting for Stone.
- Jerold S. Kayden, Fellow 1989, has supported a new Climate Change Fund for Fellowships that are related to climate change in different fields of study. In 2023 the Climate Change Fund will support a Fellowship in Earth Science, awarded to Stephen R. Meyers, the Vilas Distinguished Professor in the department of geoscience at University of Wisconsin-Madison. He is studying ice sheet variability and sea level change.
- The Eleanor Schwartz Charitable Foundation has underwritten a Fellowship in Medicine & Health awarded to Euan Angus Ashley. Ashley is a physician based at Stanford University who is best known for his numerous innovations in the field of medical genomics and precision medicine.
- Matt Pincus and Sarah Min have underwritten a Fellowship in Fiction, General Noniction, or Biography for a woman or person of color. This new Fellowship has been awarded to General Nonfiction Fellow Kao Kalia Yang. Yang has written two memoirs about her family’s experience as Hmong refugees in the United States.
- Park S. Nobel, a 1973 Guggenheim Fellow, has partially underwritten a Fellowship in Biology for Monica Dus, an associate professor in the Department of Molecular, Cellular, and Developmental Biology at the University of Michigan who studies nutrigenomics, the study of how food and genes interact.
- Together, five Guggenheim Fellows have funded a Fellowship in Early Modern Studies: this year, its recipient is Tanya Pollard. Pollard is a professor at City University of New York, Brooklyn College, specializing in Shakespeare and the influence of classical Greek drama.
- An exceptionally generous bequest in 2019 from the estate of the great American novelist Philip Roth, a 1959 Guggenheim Fellow, provides partial support for a wide variety of writers.
- Fellows in the creative arts are partially supported by the Joel Conarroe Fund, named for the former President of the Foundation who was a Guggenheim Fellow in 1977.
About the Guggenheim Foundation
Created and initially funded in 1925 by Senator Simon and Olga Guggenheim in memory of their son John Simon Guggenheim, the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation has sought since its inception to “further the development of scholars and artists by assisting them to engage in research in any field of knowledge and creation in any of the arts, under the freest possible conditions.”
Since its establishment, the Foundation has granted nearly $400 million in Fellowships to over 18,000 individuals, among whom are more than 125 Nobel laureates, members of all the national academies, winners of the Pulitzer Prize, Fields Medal, Turing Award, Bancroft Prize, National Book Award, and other internationally recognized honors. The great range of fields of study is a unique characteristic of the Fellowship program.
The Foundation centers the talents and instincts of the Fellows, whose passions often have broad and immediate impact. For example, Zora Neale Hurston wrote Their Eyes Were Watching God in 1936 with the support of a Guggenheim Fellowship and dedicated it to the Foundation’s first president, Henry Allen Moe. Photographer Robert Frank’s seminal book, The Americans, was the product of a cross-country tour supported by two Guggenheim Fellowships. The accomplishments of other early Fellows like Jacob Lawrence, Rachel Carson, James Baldwin, Martha Graham, and Linus Pauling also demonstrate the strength of the Foundation’s core values and the power and impact of its approach.