Year in Review

2014: The Year in Review

Among the significant events that occurred at Stanford during 2014 were the following:


  • Facebook's Mark Zuckerberg and President John Hennessy discuss how social media can solve challenging problems.
  • Sigrid Close, assistant professor of aeronautics and astronautics; Jennifer Dionne, assistant professor of materials science and engineering; and Sean Hartnoll, assistant professor of physics, win Presidential Early Career Awards for Scientists and Engineers.
  • Education Professors Prudence Carter and Sean Reardon are elected to the National Academy of Education.
President John Hennessy and Mark Zuckerberg

President Hennessey and Mark Zuckerberg


  • Alumnus Gene Sykes, co-head of global mergers and acquisitions and chairman of global technology, media and telecommunications investment banking at Goldman Sachs, joins the Board of Trustees.
  • Alumni David Jai, Andrew Parker and Eric Tuan are awarded Gates Cambridge Scholarships.
  • Stephen Boyd, professor of electrical engineering, is elected to the National Academy of Engineering.
  • Seven faculty members receive Sloan Research Fellowships: Thomas Markland (chemistry), Maria Barna (genetics, developmental biology), Anshul Kundaje (genetics, computer science), Julia Salzman (biochemistry), Jakub Kastl (economics), Liang Feng (molecular and cellular physiology) and Monika Schleier-Smith (physics).


  • Gro Harlem Brundtland, former prime minister of Norway, is named the Haas Distinguished Visitor.
  • Alumna Srinija Srinivasan, co-founder of Loove, joins the Board of Trustees.
  • First Lady Michelle Obama supports global education during a talk at the Stanford Center at Peking University.
Michelle Obama

Michell Obama


  • Chiney Ogwumike is selected first in the WNBA draft.
  • Eleven faculty members are elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences: Karol Berger (music), Emmanuel Candès (mathematics, statistics), William Damon (education), Linda Darling-Hammond (education), James Fishkin (communication), Shanto Iyengar (communication, political science), Daphne Koller (computer science), Jonathan Levin (economics), Stephen Quake (bioengineering, applied physics), Mendel Rosenblum (computer science, electrical engineering) and Londa Schiebinger (history).
  • Three faculty are named Guggenheim Fellows: Robert Dawson, photography instructor; Jonathan Levin, economics professor; Monika Piazzesi, economics professor.
Chiney Ogwumike performing a layup

Chiney Ogwumike


  • At the request of students, the Board of Trustees decides that Stanford will not make direct investments in coal-mining companies.
  • Joseph Puglisi, chair of structural biology, and Emmanuel Candès, professor of mathematics and of statistics, are elected to the National Academy of Sciences.
  • Women's water polo wins the NCAA national championship, marking the 38th straight year the Cardinal has won at least one NCAA title – a national best.
  • Andrei Linde, professor of physics, wins the Kavli Prize in Astrophysics.
  • Former President George W. Bush meets with students to talk about defining moments of his presidency.
  • Nobel laureate and physicist Steven Chu is elected to the Royal Society.
Andrei Linde

Andrei Linde


  • Persis Drell, former director of the SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory, is named dean of the School of Engineering.
  • Deborah Stipek begins her second term as dean of the Graduate School of Education.
  • Commencement speakers Bill and Melinda Gates urge graduates to change the world through optimism and empathy.
  • The Shriram Center for Bioengineering & Chemical Engineering becomes the fourth and final building in the Science and Engineering Quad.
Bill and Melinda Gates giving commencement speech

Bill and Melinda Gates


  • Eleven Stanford students and alumni are named Fulbright scholars.
  • California Gov. Jerry Brown nominates Mariano-Florentino Cuéllar, professor of law and director of the Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies, as associate justice of the California Supreme Court.
Mariano-Florentino Cuéllar

Mariano-Florentino Cuéllar


  • The Donald Kennedy Graduate Residences open to provide campus homes to 436 students.
  • Mathematician Maryam Mirzakhani is the first woman to ever win the Fields Medal – known as the "Nobel Prize of mathematics" – in recognition of her contributions to the understanding of the symmetry of curved surfaces.
  • Art Sterritt, who has helped protect the Great Bear Rainforest in British Columbia, wins the $100,000 Bright Award from the Stanford Law School in collaboration with the Woods Institute for the Environment.
Maryam Mirzakhani

Maryam Mirzakhani


  • The Lathrop Library opens as the new home of the East Asia Library.
  • The Anderson Collection at Stanford opens, featuring one of the finest collections of post-World War II American art in the world.
  • Jennifer Eberhardt, associate professor of psychology, is named one of the 2014 fellows of the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation.
  • Stanford is one of the first U.S. universities to receive official electronic academic records from China – something Registrar Tom Black hopes will set a standard for record exchanges with other countries.
  • The new Stanford in New York City program is approved, allowing undergraduates to use the city as their laboratory in the arts, design architecture and urban studies.
Anderson collection - sculptures and paintings

The Anderson collection


  • President Obama awards the National Medal of Science – the nation's highest honor for achievements in science and engineering – to Professors Emeriti Thomas Kailath and Burton Richter.
  • Chemistry Professor W.E. Moerner wins the Nobel Prize in Chemistry "for having bypassed a presumed scientific limitation stipulating that an optical microscope can never yield a resolution better than 0.2 micrometers."
  • Windhover, a contemplative center featuring the art of the late Nathan Oliveira, opens.
  • This year's Stanford Roundtable focuses on climate change, with journalist Lesley Stahl as moderator.
  • Provost John Etchemendy names nine faculty members Bass Fellows in recognition of their contributions to undergraduate education: Sarah Church (physics), Robert Dutton (electrical engineering), Margot Gerritsen (energy resources engineering), Caroline Hoxby (economics), Nicholas Jenkins (English), Kathryn Moler (applied physics and physics), Stephen Makoto Sano (music), R. Lanier Anderson (philosophy) and Brad Osgood (electrical engineering).
Lesley Stahl moderates roundtable discussion

Stanford Roundtable


  • Former U.S. ambassador and Stanford political scientist Michael McFaul is appointed director of the Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies.
  • The Stanford Woods Institute for the Environment marks a decade of interdisciplinary breakthroughs.
  • Stanford alumnus Kenneth Olivier, chairman emeritus of Dodge & Cox investment management company, is elected to the Board of Trustees.
  • Seniors Maya Krishnan and Emily Witt win 2015 Rhodes Scholarships.
  • A Hewlett Foundation grant creates the Stanford Cyber Initiative to address the challenges of cyber-technologies.
  • Sheri Sheppard, professor of mechanical engineering, is named a U.S. Professor of the Year.
  • Five are named fellows of the American Association for the Advancement of Science: Tom Abel (physics), Russ Altman (bioengineering), Sanjiv Gambhir (radiology), Michael Snyder (genetics) and William Talbot (developmental biology).
Sheri Sheppard

Sheri Sheppard


  • Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies visiting scholar Ashton Carter is nominated to be U.S. Secretary of Defense.
  • Franklin "Lynn" Orr, founding director of the Precourt Institute for Energy, becomes under secretary for science and energy in the U.S. Department of Energy.