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2020 President’s Frontier Award Recipient & Finalists

Dr. Emily Riehl, an associate professor in the Krieger School of Arts and Sciences’ Department of Mathematics, was referred to as the world’s queen of category theory in her nomination letter. Category theory is a metamathematical language that allows you to prove very general theorems that are independent of the specific context. Emily’s work is helpful for other mathematicians to refine their thoughts and generalize their arguments. She is also known as a force of nature for for attracting graduate students and postdocs to work with her, leading highly attended seminars and graduate classes, and creating new undergraduate classes while pursuing a formidable research program. She is, as colleagues would say, a rock star mathematician, sought-after speaker, beloved teacher, and exceptional candidate who stood out from the excellent pool of nominees.

“Emily is a rising star in her field, recognized as a convener of academic peers and a collaborator across disciplines,” said President Ronald J. Daniels. “She has published more than two dozen journal articles and three books, including an introductory book on category theory and a book that prepares graduate students for research. Book projects are fairly unusual in mathematics, and particularly so for scholars in the early stages of their careers. The Frontier Award will give Emily space to finish a new book with her longtime collaborator, Dominic Verity, a professor in the Department of Computing at Macquarie University in Sydney, that pulls together and solidifies ideas from thousands of pages of published papers on their topic.”

Finalist: Gül Dölen, assistant professor of neuroscience in the School of Medicine

Finalist: Roland Thorpe, an associate professor of health, behavior and society in the Bloomberg School of Public Health

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