Clark Kerr Award


Marye Anne Fox


The Berkeley Division of the Academic Senate has announced that Dr. Marye Anne Fox of the University of California, San Diego (UCSD), will receive its 2014 Clark Kerr Award for Distinguished Leadership in Higher Education. The award was created in 1968 as a tribute to the leadership and legacy of President Emeritus Kerr.  It recognizes an individual who has made an extraordinary and distinguished contribution to the advancement of higher education.  The award will be presented at a private ceremony on the Berkeley campus in March.

Dr. Fox is chancellor emerita and distinguished professor of chemistry and biochemistry at UCSD, one of the world's leading public research universities. She served as the 7th chancellor (and the first woman chancellor) of UCSD from 2004 to 2012. She has previously held similar named or endowed titles at both the University of Texas and at North Carolina State University before moving to California. 

Fox's research established her as a leading international expert on the impact of non-homogeneous media on the excited-state reactions of organic molecules. Fox was an early pioneer in interdisciplinary research.  Her leadership in such team-based projects helped them gain acceptance in the academic community. Dr. Fox's scholarly contributions have been recognized by a large number of national and international honors, including the National Medal of Science (2010), and elections to the U.S. National Academy of Sciences, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and the American Philosophical Society. 

In her leadership roles at North Carolina State University and UC San Diego, Dr. Fox has helped to define 21st century research universities.  She recognized the importance of making interdisciplinary scholarship, internationalization, and innovation an integral part of the academic culture.  Drawing on lessons from her own discipline-crossing research, Dr. Fox has lowered barriers to collaboration across campus departments by promoting initiatives in such interdisciplinary areas as nanotechnology, environmental science, and stem cell research.  She has expanded opportunities for international partnerships with Pacific Rim and Latin American institutions by helping to lead academic consortia.  In addition, she has contributed significantly to promoting a culture of innovation and public-private partnerships at universities, first through NC State’s Centennial Campus that spawned dozens of new companies, and now in California, where she strengthened technology transfer at UCSD by introducing new strategies for early-stage commercialization of intellectual property generated by faculty, staff, and students.   Dr. Fox also served on the University of California President's Science & Innovation Board.

In announcing the award, the Academic Senate noted that Dr. Fox exemplifies all of the qualities one would expect to see in a recipient of the prestigious Clark Kerr Award for Distinguished Leadership in Higher Education.  She is first and foremost a preeminent scholar.  But beyond her scholarly accomplishments, Dr. Fox has used her scientific and administrative leadership positions to enhance the vitality of our national research enterprise by working tirelessly and effectively to strengthen science education and science policy.


History of the Clark Kerr Award