People Notes January 2019


Michael Beckley, an assistant professor of political science, had his Foreign Affairs article “Stop Obsessing About China” make it to Foreign AffairsBest of the Web 2018 list.

David Antonio Cruz, professor of the practice in painting and drawing at the School of the Museum of Fine Arts at Tufts University (SMFA), and Evelyn Rydz, MFA05, are among the recipients of the Joan Mitchell Foundation 2018 Painters and Sculptors Grants. Individual awards of $25,000 support underrecognized artists whose works have significantly contributed to artistic discourse. Cruz is a multidisciplinary artist whose latest works include paintings inspired by poems by the Spanish poet Federico García Lorca and an operatic piece based on Irish revolutionary Roger Casement’s Black Diaries. Rydz, a visual artist and associate professor at the Massachusetts College of Art, recently created an interactive installation at the Institute of Contemporary Art in Boston where visitors could investigate, experiment, and reflect on the imperiled future of oceans and seas. 

Irina Dragan, assistant professor in the Department of Periodontology at the School of Dental Medicine, received the prestigious Bud and Linda Tarrson Fellowship at the American Academy of Periodontology meeting in October in Vancouver. She was one of several dental school community members honored. Carlos Parra, DG15, received the AAP Foundations Fellowship for the ADEA/AAL Institute for Teaching and Learning in the Health Professions; Lorenzo Mordini, DG15, DG16, was awarded the Nevins BioHorizons Fellowship; Yau-Hua Yu, assistant professor in periodontology, was an AAP Teaching Fellowship finalist; and Gayathri Shenoy and Min-Yin Lu, periodontology residents, received Nobel Biocare Student Member Annual Meeting Scholarships.

Danny McCusker, senior lecturer in the Department of Theater, Dance, and Performance, has been chosen to perform, along with a small group of other performers from around the world, in an international tribute to Merce Cunningham on what would have been his 100th birthday. Night of 100 Solos: A Centennial Event will be held on April 16 in venues in London, New York City, and Los Angeles and will feature 100 solos choreographed by Cunningham. McCusker, who is also an associate professor of dance at Boston Conservatory at Berklee, will perform at UCLA.

Maureen Murray, V03, clinical associate professor of wildlife medicine at Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine, has been honored by the Animal Welfare Institute with a Christine Stevens Wildlife Award, which recognizes those who advance innovative, less intrusive wildlife study techniques and more humane methods of resolving conflicts between wild animals and humans. Her $15,000 grant will support work developing accurate methods of screening red-tailed hawks to document exposure to dangerous anticoagulant rodenticides.

Allen Shaughnessy, professor of family medicine at the School of Medicine, won a 2018 This We Believe Award from the Family Medicine Education Consortium for his essay “Living Longer, Living Better.” The Consortium invites physicians, physicians-in-training, and medical students engaged in family medicine to express their core beliefs about serving others; winning essays were shared at the organization’s November annual conference.  

Margaret Stevens, a NASA Space Technology Research Fellow at the School of Engineering, has been invited to present at the annual Space Technology Research Grants Day in Washington D.C. on January 23. A Ph.D. candidate, she works in the Renewable Energy and Applied Photonics Laboratory under the direction of Associate Professor Thomas Vandervelde. In October she won Best Student Presentation at the 33rd North American Molecular Beam Epitaxy Conference.


Aidee Nieto-Herman, associate professor in the Department of Periodontology at the School of Medicine, recently led twenty-one volunteers to the island of Fogo in Cape Verde, West Africa, where they saw more than 600 patients. The group included Zuzana Mendez, DI08, DG97, Quyen Tran, D10, Lagina Bickham, D92, Lilia Cucerov, DI10, and Elena Cucerov, D19. Herman is president of the Hispanic International Mission, which organized the visit.

Gilbert E. Metcalf, professor of economics, has been asked to serve as a lead author in the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Sixth Assessment Report; a member of Working Group III, he is lead author for Chapter 3, Mitigation of Climate Change.

Julie Nelson, senior research fellow at the Global Development and Environment Institute (GDAE), has released the second edition of her book Economics for Humans. The updated text contains a new chapter on economics and the environment and expanded discussions of many topics including “alternative” economic structures. The Times Literary Supplement wrote about the first edition, “Passionate, to be welcomed in a discipline notably devoid of passion. . . . Can be read for pleasure and enlightenment by economists and non-economists alike.”

Allen Rutberg, research associate professor at Cummings School, presented on “Managing Wild Horses with PZP” at the Botstiber Institute for Wildlife Fertility Control wild horse and burro workshop in Albuquerque on November 8. He also gave a community talk entitled “Using PZP with Community Horses in Placitas” at a public meeting for Sandoval County, New Mexico, on November 9.

Padmashree Gehl Sampath, visiting scholar GDAE, has released a new GDAE working paper entitled Industrial Policy 4.0: Promoting transformation in the digital economy [PDF].The paper looks at the changing industry and innovation landscape in the context of the digital economy and makes recommendations for a new framework for industrial policy (Industrial Policy 4.0) to promote transformation and structural change in developing countries.

June Sekera, research fellow at GDAE, released Public Goods Post Vol. 3, No 7, “The Biophysics of Public Management: Galbraith’s Call for a “New Public Administration.” This post examines a paper by Galbraith that argues for shifts away from the traditional frameworks of public administration towards a “biophysical systems” approach to the production of public goods. Sekera also received praise for her 2016 book The Public Economy in Crisis: A Call for a New Public Economics in a review by economist William Milberg in the most recent edition of Real-World Economics Review.  

Liz Stanton, senior research fellow at GDAE, provided testimony on behalf of the Conservation Law Foundation regarding the joint statewide three-year energy efficiency plan in Massachusetts for 2019-2021. The testimony provided an independent review of the petitions filed by the Massachusetts gas and electric energy efficiency program administrators to assess their consistency with the Green Communities Act, the Global Warmings Solutions Act, and other Massachusetts Department of Public Utilities orders.

Eugene White, associate professor; Kevin Lindell, assistant professor; and Sawkat Anwer, associate dean for research, all at Cummings School, took part in the Conference of Continuing Education for the Veterinarian and Animal Husbandry Graduates of Bangladesh. Anwer gave the keynote address, “Bangladesh Veterinary Education and Profession: Striving to Attain Global Standard.” White and Lindell gave a series of presentations on herd health and reproductive health. 

Chris Whittier, research assistant professor in the Department of Infectious Disease and Global Health at Cummings School, traveled to the University of Lubumbashi in the Democratic Republic of Congo November 10-17 for One Health Workforce duties supporting the university’s master’s program in wildlife health and management. He delivered a variety of lectures, assessed student presentations, and assisted with field visits to a local village and hospital as well as a private wildlife preserve, a primate rescue center, and the Lubumbashi Zoo.


Julie Dobrow’s recent book, After Emily: Two Remarkable Women and the Legacy of America’s Greatest Poet (W. W. Norton, 2018) has been longlisted for the PEN/Bograd Weld Award for Biography. Dobrow, a senior lecturer with appointments in the department of Child Study and Human Development and the Tisch College of Civic Life, weaves together the story of poet Emily Dickinson with that of Mabel Loomis Todd and her daughter Millicent Todd Bingham, who built Dickinson’s literary legacy. After Emily also contains more than fifty photographs, many never before been published. The PEN/Bograd Weld award is bestowed annually on a work of exceptional literary, narrative, and artistic merit, based on scrupulous research.

Shafiqul Islam, professor of civil and environmental engineering at the School of Engineering, and colleague Enamul Choudhury co-edited Complexity of Transboundary Water Conflicts, Enabling Conditions for Negotiating Contingent Resolutions (Anthem Press, 2018), which looks at new ways of resolving transboundary water issues around the world.

Gilbert E. Metcalf, professor of economics, makes the case for a carbon tax in Paying for Pollution: Why a Carbon Tax Is Good for America (Oxford University Press, 2019). A carbon tax, he argues, is the most efficient and fair way to address the major cause of climate change.


Amy East, A97, a research geologist for the United States Geological Survey, has been named editor-in-chief of the journal JGR: Earth Surface. East, who is interviewed in a recent Earth and Space Science News, served as associate editor since 2013.

Daniel Kass, A13, was featured in a New York Times article on “a new crop of hackers building easy-to-use, data-driven tools to empower tenants and take on notoriously bad landlords. The goal behind this wave of what coders call ‘civic technology’ is to create low cost solutions to some of New York City’s most pressing civic problems, like affordable housing.” Kass and cofounder Georges Clement were recognized on Forbes’ 2018 30 Under 30 list of up-and-coming entrepreneurs and innovators.

Ioannis Miaoulis, E83, EG86, EG87, longtime Museum of Science president and director, will step down at the end of January. During his tenure, the organization raised more than $470 million, including a $250 capital campaign that was closed in 2015, and a record $50 million grant from Michael Bloomberg. Miaoulis, a trustee emeritus of Tufts, was dean of the School of Engineering before joining the Museum of Science in 2003. He also served Tufts as associate provost, interim dean of the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, and professor of mechanical engineering. In addition to helping Tufts raise $100 million for the engineering school during his tenure there, Miaoulis increased the number of women students and faculty, designed collaborative programs with industry, and expanded research initiatives.

Steven G. Rogelberg, A89, has published The Surprising Science of Meetings: How You Can Lead Your Team to Peak Performance (Oxford, 2019).  The book was recently featured in a New York magazine article advocating for shorter meetings. Rogelberg is Chancellor’s Professor at University of North Carolina, Charlotte and a past recipient of the Humboldt Prize.