In Brief: November-December 2005

November 30, 2005
  • Chandra Y. Guinn has been named director of the Mary Lou Williams Center for Black Culture. A Ph.D. candidate in sociology at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Guinn taught previously in Duke's African and African American studies program.
  • Duke biochemist Chris Raetz is a member of a multi-university research team that is receiving a $14.8-million grant to collaborate on the creation of an improved anti-pneumonia vaccine for newborns. The initiative is being funded as part of the Grand Challenges in Global Health Initiative, under the aegis of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.
  • Duke's trustees have approved changing the name of the Department of Slavic Languages and Literatures to the Department of Slavic and Eurasian Studies. Department chair Edna Andrews says the new name better reflects the geographical scope of faculty members' teaching and research. It also underscores a broad-based approach to the field that goes beyond simple language instruction, she says, to incorporate gender studies, history, semiotics, media and film, and comparative literature, among other topics.
  • Three Duke professors were among the 213 new fellows elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences: James Samuel Clark, H. L. Blomquist Professor at the Nicholas School and in the department of biology; Herbert Edelsbrunner, Arts and Sciences Professor of Computer Science and Mathematics; and Thomas D. Petes, chair of the department of molecular genetics and microbiology at Duke Medical Center. The academy, founded in 1780 by John Adams, James Bowdoin, John Hancock, and other scholar-patriots, recognizes leaders in scholarship, business, the arts, and public affairs.