Davis High School students Robert Lipman and Jonathan Liu have been selected to receive National Merit Scholarships financed by their universities. They join more than 2,500 other college-sponsored award recipients announced in late May.
Lipman will receive a scholarship to attend the University of Chicago, where he hopes to major in biomedical venture capital. Liu will attend Rice University in Houston, where he hopes to major in biomedical engineering.
Julie Schoenung, of Davis, was elected a fellow of ASM International by the Board of Trustees of ASM International. The honor of Fellow represents recognition of Schoenung’s distinguished contributions in the field of materials science and engineering. Schoenung will receive the award at the Convocation of Fellows to be held during the ASM Awards Dinner on Oct. 9 in Pittsburgh.
A professor in the department of chemical engineering and materials science at UC Davis, Shoenung graduated from the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign in 1983, and received both her master’s and Ph.D. from MIT in 1985 and 1987. She focuses her research on nanostructured and ultrafine-grained materials, and on green materials and green engineering design.
Schoenung is co-director of the Toxic Substances Research and Teaching Program, a Max Plank fellow, an AT&T Industrial Ecology Faculty Fellow and serves on California’s Green Ribbon Science Panel.
Bill Shea of Woodland, an aerospace lecturer, artist and aviation media analyst, attended the Farnborough International Airshow in England, July 9-15. In 2010, sales of $45 billion in commercial airliners, military aircraft and supplies were announced during the show, which attracted 120,000 visitors from 40 countries, Shea said.
“Besides sale orders, there were seminars and meetings on the status of world air transportation, as well as what we can expect to see in the future. Some of the world’s best pilots flew the newest civil airlines, military fighters and transports.”
Shea was associate administrator for airports for the Federal Aviation Administration under President Ronald Reagan. He is a member of the Yolo County Transportation Advisory Committee.
Maria Walker made the spring term dean’s list at the University of Oregon. Making the list requires at least a 3.75 grade-point average.
Walker is an undeclared major in the Honors College. She graduated from Davis High School in 2011.
Rebecca Rukeyser of Davis received a master’s of fine arts degree in English from the University of Iowa, college officials announced. The university awarded an estimated 4,300 degrees at the close of the spring session.
UC Davis graduate Elaine Russell‘s new novel, “Across the Mekong River,” traces the dangerous journey of a Hmong family who escapes war and persecution in Laos to start a new life in America.
Russell, who earned a bachelor’s in history at UCD and a master’s in economics at Sacramento State, first became inspired to write the story after meeting Hmong children in her son’s school in Sacramento and reading Anne Fadiman’s “The Spirit Catches You” and “You Fall Down.”
“As I started formulating ideas for a story, I met a Hmong woman at my husband’s office. She told me her story of survival and her family’s struggle with life in the U.S.,” Russell said. “She introduced me to her friends who shared their experiences as well.”
Russell started down a fascinating path of discovery, learning about Hmong culture and traditions, and the Laos civil war. She visited Laos in 2006 to do further research and, soon after, joined the U.S. based non-profit Legacies of War, which advocates for the clearance of unexploded bombs from the war.
“Many of the struggles the family in my book faces — poverty, prejudice and conflicting cultural expectations — are timeless themes that run true for all new immigrants who come the U.S. filled with hope, only to face a harsh reality,” Russell said.
Internationally respected neuroscientist Fredric A. Gorin, whose investigations of novel therapies for brain cancer, traumatic brain injury, cerebrovascular disease and stroke have resulted in four U.S. patents, has been appointed chair of the Department of Neurology in the UC Davis School of Medicine. Gorin’s appointment became effective July 1.
Gorin oversees more than 100 faculty, volunteer clinical faculty, post-doctoral fellows, residents, graduate students, clinical fellows and staff members, who conduct research and provide expert clinical and diagnostic services for individuals suffering from a broad array of neurological and neuromuscular conditions, including Alzheimer’s disease and other neurocognitive disorders, epilepsy, cerebrovascular disease and stroke, Huntington’s and Parkinson’s diseases, traumatic brain injury and muscular dystrophy.
“Dr. Gorin’s innovative and multifaceted investigations place him at the forefront of our understanding of diseases of the nervous system, from brain cancer to traumatic brain injury,” said Claire Pomeroy, vice chancellor for Human Health Sciences and dean of the School of Medicine at UCD. “His leadership will advance our commitment to translating scientific insights into new treatments and superior patient care for individuals affected by neurological conditions.”
Gorin’s earlier investigations led to the first chromosomal mapping of a human muscle disease, McArdle’s disease. His subsequent research at UCD led to insights into the cellular mechanisms by which neuromuscular activity regulates skeletal muscle metabolism at the genetic level, elucidating that specific types of regenerated muscle acquire a metabolic disorder, making them susceptible to damage during high-intensity exercise.
Gorin began his academic career as adjunct assistant professor at UC San Francisco, in biochemistry in 1983 and neurology in 1984, following completion of his neurology residency there. He joined the UCD Department of Neurology in 1985 and holds a joint appointment in molecular biosciences in the UCD School of Veterinary Medicine. He collaborates with researchers at the veterinary school, UCD Comprehensive Cancer Center and the UCD Center for Neuroscience.
Eric Gelber, 65, of Davis, has been appointed assistant director of the office of legislation at the California Department of Developmental Services. Gelber has been chief consultant for the California State Assembly Committee on Human Services since 2008. He worked in multiple positions at Disability Rights California from 1983 to 2008, including staff attorney and managing attorney.
This position does not require Senate confirmation and the annual compensation is $115,008. Gelber is a Democrat.
— Do you know of someone who has won an award or accomplished something noteworthy? Send it, preferably by email, to firstname.lastname@example.org, or to Name Droppers, The Davis Enterprise, P.O. Box 1470, Davis, CA 95617.