Campus News

Two Franklin College faculty members named AAAS Fellows

Debra Mohnen is a professor of biochemistry and molecular biology with the UGA Franklin College of Arts and Sciences and a member of UGA’s Complex Carbohydrate Research Center. 

Two UGA faculty members have been named Fellows of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, an honor bestowed upon them by their peers for “scientifically or socially distinguished efforts to advance science or its applications.”

These two faculty members are among 388 new AAAS Fellows who will be presented with an official certificate and a gold and blue ­(representing science and ­engineering, respectively) rosette pin on Feb. 15 during the 2014 AAAS annual meeting in Chicago.

“Selection as an AAAS Fellow is a major milestone in a scientist’s career, and thus the University of Georgia is enormously pleased that two of our faculty have been selected for this honor,” said David Lee, vice president for research. “This peer recognition is important to our faculty and it also brings added distinction to the university.”

The 2013 AAAS Fellows, both in the Franklin College of Arts and Sciences, are Debra Mohnen, professor of biochemistry and molecular biology, and Robert A. Scott, professor of chemistry.

Mohnen is recognized for pioneering work describing the biosynthesis of pectins and unraveling their role in plant cell wall integrity.

Scott is recognized for distinguished contributions to metallobiochemistry, particularly on applications of synchrotron radiation-based techniques in bioinorganic chemistry, and for outstanding student training and university administration.

The tradition of AAAS Fellows began in 1874. Currently, members can be considered for the rank of Fellow if nominated by the steering groups of the association’s 24 sections, or by any three Fellows who are current AAAS members (as long as two of the three sponsors are not affiliated with the nominee’s institution) or by the AAAS chief executive officer. Fellows must have been continuous members of AAAS for four years by the end of the calendar year in which they are elected.