Faculty News+Notes

Two renowned researchers have joined Johns Hopkins as Bloomberg Distinguished Professors. Chi Van Dang, Med '82 (MD), HS '85, a cancer biologist and hematologist-oncologist, has returned to Johns Hopkins, where he completed both his medical training and residency, and later taught for 24 years. The Bloomberg Distinguished Professor of cancer medicine, he holds primary appointments in the Department of Oncology in the School of Medicine and the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology in the Bloomberg School of Public Health, as well as an appointment in the Sidney Kimmel Comprehensive Cancer Center. Dang is also the scientific director of the Ludwig Institute for Cancer Research. Nicole Baumgarth, an expert on infection with Borrelia burgdorferi, the causative agent of Lyme disease, joins Johns Hopkins as a Bloomberg Distinguished Professor of immunology and infectious diseases. She holds primary appointments in the Department of Molecular Microbiology and Immunology in the Bloomberg School and the Department of Molecular and Comparative Pathobiology in the School of Medicine. She serves also as the founding director of the Lyme and Tickborne Diseases Research and Education Institute. She comes to Hopkins from University of California, Davis, where she chaired the immunology graduate program.

Ziquan Zhuang, an assistant professor in the Department of Mathematics in the Krieger School of Arts and Sciences, is among the 126 early-career researchers who received a 2023 Sloan Research Fellowship. The award is accompanied by a two-year, $75,000 financial award to advance the researcher's work. Zhuang focuses on algebraic geometry, the study of the geometry of solutions of polynomial equations.

V. Sara Thoi, an assistant professor in the Krieger School's Department of Chemistry, received the 2023 Rising Star Award from the American Chemical Society Women Chemists Committee for her work in energy conversion and storage.

Nine Johns Hopkins University researchers are among 508 scholars elected to the newest class of fellows of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, or AAAS, the world's largest general scientific society. The 2022 class of fellows will be celebrated in Washington, D.C., this summer and were featured in the AAAS News and Notes section of Science in February. The AAAS Fellows from Johns Hopkins in the Section on Neuroscience are Gregory Bergey, a professor of neurology, and Xinzhong Dong, a professor of neuroscience, both in the School of Medicine. In the Section on Biological Sciences are Xin Chen, a professor in the Department of Biology at the Krieger School, and Douglas Robinson, a professor and cell biologist at the School of Medicine. In the Section on Chemistry is Juliette Lecomte, a professor in the Department of Biophysics in the Krieger School. In the Section on Medical Sciences are Rajini Rao, a professor of physiology, and Antony Rosen, a professor of medicine, both in the School of Medicine. In the Section on Astronomy is Ethan Vishniac, a research professor and theoretical astrophysicist in the Department of Physics and Astronomy in the Krieger School. In Engineering is Tza-Huei "Jeff " Wang, a professor in Mechanical Engineering and Biomedical Engineering in the Whiting School and the School of Medicine.

At the 2023 Grammy Awards, Peabody faculty composer Kevin Puts was awarded the Best Contemporary Classical Composition for Contact, performed by the string trio Time for Three and the Philadelphia Orchestra under the direction of conductor Xian Zhang. Puts and librettist Greg Pierce's opera, The Hours, made its celebrated debut at the Metropolitan Opera in New York in November.

Richard Mendola, an information technology leader who has spent the past 17 years at Emory University, has been selected as the new vice president and chief information officer for Johns Hopkins University and Medicine. At Hopkins, Mendola will hold an executive leadership position responsible for enterprisewide strategic and operational oversight of information technology systems and infrastructure across both Johns Hopkins University and Johns Hopkins Medicine.

Johns Hopkins Engineering's online graduate degree programs continue to be among the country's best, according to the latest U.S. News & World Report rankings. The Whiting School's Engineering for Professionals program occupies the No. 9 spot overall, jumping three spaces from last year's No. 12. The Whiting School's online information technology programs maintained their No. 2 spot.

Oscar Bettison, a Composition professor at Peabody Conservatory, was awarded a Koussevitzky Music Foundation commission by the Library of Congress to write a new work for Loadbang, the New York chamber ensemble. Additionally, Bettison's "La hija del neón" for cello, piano, and electric guitar, appears on the EP 20 for 2020, Volume IV, the final volume of Israeli cellist Inbal Segev's project of pieces commissioned during the pandemic.

Binu Koirala, an assistant professor in the School of Nursing, has been selected a fellow of the Preventive Cardiovascular Nurses Association. Koi- rala's research expertise includes cardiovascular disease, multimorbidity, palliative care, and global health.

Rama Chellappa, a Bloomberg Distinguished Professor in Electrical and Computer Engineering and Biomedical Engineering in the Whiting School and the School of Medicine, has achieved one of his profession's highest distinctions: election to the National Academy of Engineering. Chellappa was honored for "contributions to digital image analysis, automatic face recognition, and applications."

Kwang Soo Cheong, an associate professor of practice in the Carey Business School, is the new president-elect of the Korea-America Economic Association. His term as president will begin in 2024.

Joseph Plaster, director of the Winston Tabb Special Collections Research Center and curator in Public Humanities at the Sheridan Libraries & University Museums, has been named 2023's Small Institution Award Winner by the National Council on Public History for the Peabody Ballroom Experience, an arts and humanities collaboration between JHU and Baltimore's ballroom community.