On the Beat
Dean Baquet, who attended Columbia between 1974 and 1978, was named executive editor of the New York Times in May, succeeding Jill Abramson. Baquet, who had been managing editor of the paper since 2011, is the first African-American to serve as executive editor, the highest-ranking newsroom position. He won the Pulitzer Prize for investigative reporting in 1988.
Two Columbians won Pulitzer Prizes this April. David N. Philipps ’02JRN, a reporter at the Colorado Springs Gazette, won the national-reporting prize for his work chronicling the mistreatment of wounded veterans. Vijay Seshadri ’88SOA won the poetry award for his collection 3 Sections.
Radiator Labs, a startup collaboration between Marshall Cox ’13SEAS and electrical-engineering professor John Kymissis, won one of Popular Sciencemagazine’s 2014 Invention Awards for an energyefficient heating system. The product functions like a thermostat for steam radiators, which consumers control through an Internet app.
Allison Lewko, a professor of computer science, was named to Forbes magazine’s “30 Under 30” list in the science and health-care category. Her research focuses on encryption algorithms and new ways to keep data secure online.
The State Department’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs has selected Joan Jonas ’65SOA to represent the United States at the 2015 Venice Biennale. Originally trained as a sculptor, Jonas began using performance and video art in the 1970s, and is widely regarded as a pioneer in those media. Jonas, a professor of visual art at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, will create a site-specific installation for the show, which runs from May 9 through November 22, 2015. She is the second consecutive Columbian to represent America in Venice; School of the Arts professor Sarah Sze earned the honor in 2013.
Jennifer Crewe ’79SOA was appointed president and director of Columbia University Press by provost John Coatsworth, becoming the first woman director of an Ivy League university press. Crewe has been at the press for twenty-eight years, and has served as its interim director for the last nine months.
Jimmy So ’11JRN will be the first editor of Columbia Global Reports, a new University publication directed by Nicholas Lemann, a professor of journalism and dean emeritus of the journalism school. Columbia Global Reports will put out four to six book-length editions a year focusing on under-reported global issues. So spent the last three years at the Daily Beast as a culture and books editor.
Darko Tresnjak ’98SOA won the 2014 Tony Award for best direction of a musical. His production, A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder, won three other Tonys, including best musical. Tresnjak is the second consecutive School of the Arts alum to win the best-direction award — Diane Paulus ’97SOA won last year for Pippin.
Samantha Buck, a film student in the School of the Arts, won a Peabody Award for her documentary Best Kept Secret, which focuses on the special-needs department at a Newark high school. Buck wrote and directed the film, while Daniella Kahane Levy ’14SOA was an executive producer and Nara Garber ’99SOA was the director of photography.