Elected Members

Election to the American Philosophical Society honors extraordinary accomplishments in all fields. The APS is unusual among learned societies because its Membership is comprised of top scholars from a wide variety of academic disciplines.

The APS is an elected body of scholars from all different disciplines. Today the Society has approximately 1,000 elected Members, about 850 of whom are Resident Members (are citizens of or live and work in the United States) and about 150 are International Members from more than two dozen countries. Only 5,605 Members have been elected since 1743. Since 1900, more than 240 Members have received the Nobel Prize.

Early Members included George Washington, John Adams, Thomas Jefferson, Thomas Paine, James Madison, Alexander Hamilton, and John Marshall. In the 19th century, John James Audubon, Robert Fulton, Charles Darwin, Thomas Edison, and Louis Pasteur were among those elected. Albert Einstein, Robert Frost, and George Marshall hint at the scientific, humanistic, and public accomplishments of 20th-century Members. The first woman was elected in 1789the Russian Princess Dashkova, president of the Imperial Academy of Sciences of St. Petersburg.

The photo above shows the diversity of the Society's Membership, with Michael Marletta (molecular biologist), Joyce Carol Oates (author), Stephen Lippard (chemist), Yve-Alain Bois (art historian), Martha Minow (legal scholar), and Elena Kagan (Justice of the US Supreme Court) all sitting in the front row waiting to be inducted into the Society.


Newly Elected Members

April 2017 - Class I

Class 1: Mathematical & Physical Sciences

John Clarke
Professor of the Graduate School, University of California, Berkeley

Benedict H. Gross
George Vasmer Leverett Professor of Mathematics, Harvard University

Laura Lee Kiessling
Director, Keck Center for Chemical Genomics, Laurens Anderson Professor of Chemistry and Biochemistry, Steenbock Professor of Chemistry, University of Wisconsin, Madison

Rebecca Richards-Kortum
Director of Rice 360°, Institute for Global Health, Malcolm Gillis University Professor, Department of Bioengineering, Rice University

Michael S. Turner
Bruce V. and Diana M. Rauner Distinguished Service Professor, Director, Kavli Institute for Cosmological Physics, University of Chicago

April 2017 - Class 2

Class 2: Biological Sciences

Mary C. Beckerle
Chief Executive Officer, Director, Huntsman Cancer Institute, Jon M. Huntsman Presidential Endowed Chair, Distinguished Professor of Biology, Associate Vice President for Cancer Affairs, University of Utah

Sean B. Carroll
Allan Wilson Professor of Molecular Biology, Genetics and Medical Genetics, University of Wisconsin, Madison; Investigator, Vice President for Science Education, Howard Hughes Medical Institute

Stuart H. Orkin
David G. Nathan Distinguished Professor of Pediatrics, Harvard Medical School; Investigator, Howard Hughes Medical Institute

Neil H. Shubin
Robert R. Bensley Distinguished Service Professor of Organismal Biology and Anatomy, Associate Dean for Academic Strategy, University of Chicago

Marc Tessier-Lavigne
President, Bing Presidential Professor, Stanford University


Leif Andersson
Professor in Functional Genomics, Department of Medical Biochemistry and Microbiology, Uppsala University

Meave G. Leakey
Director of Plio-Pleistocene Research, Turkana Basin Institute, Research Professor, Department of Anthropology and the Turkana Basin Institute, Stony Brook University; National Geographic Explorer-in-Residence; Research Associate, National Museums of Kenya

April 2017 - Class 3

Class 3: Social Sciences

Orley Ashenfelter
Joseph Douglas Green 1895 Professor of Economics, Princeton University

Anne Catherine Case
Alexander Stewart 1886 Professor of Economics and International Affairs, Princeton University

Claude S. Fischer
Professor of Sociology, University of California, Berkeley

David Hollinger
Preston Hotchkis Professor of History Emeritus, Professor of the Graduate School, University of California, Berkeley

Beth A. Simmons
Andrea Mitchell University Professor of Law and Political Science, Penn Law, University of Pennsylvania

April 2017 - Class 4

Class 4: Humanities

Lorraine Jenifer Daston
Director, Max Planck Institute for the History of Science, Berlin; Research Associate, Department of History, University of Chicago; Permanent Fellow, Wissenschaftskolleg zu Berlin

Edward Mendelson
Professor of English and Comparative Literature, Lionel Trilling Professor in the Humanities, Columbia University

Barbara Newman
Professor of English, Religious Studies, and Classics, John Evans Professor of Latin Language and Literature, Northwestern University

Sabine Schmidtke
Professor of Islamic Intellectual History, Institute for Advanced Study

Jan Ziolkowski
Director, Dumbarton Oaks Research Library and Collection; Arthur Kingsley Porter Professor of Medieval Latin, Harvard University


Katharine Ellis
Sidney Hugh Badock Chair in Music, University of Bristol

Frantz Grenet
Professor of History and Cultures of pre-Islamic Central Asia, Collège de France, Paris, Director, French-Uzbek Archaeological Mission in Sogdiana (MAFOUZ-Sogdiane), excavating at Samarkand and other sites in Uzbekistan, Senior Fellow and Member of Advisory Committee, Institute for the Study of the Ancient World, New York University

April 2017 - Class 5

Class 5: The Arts, Professions, Leaders in Public and Private Affairs

Margaret Marshall
Senior Counsel, Choate, Hall & Stewart

Edward A. "Ned" Montgomery
Vice-Chair, Curtis Institute of Music, Vice-Chair, Philadelphia Chamber Music Society

Barack Obama
44th President of the United States

David Skorton
13th Secretary of the Smithsonian, Smithsonian Institution

Mark Thompson
President and Chief Executive Officer, New York Times Company

Billie Tsien
Principal, Partner, Tod Williams Billie Tsien Architects

Tod Williams
Principal, Partner, Tod Williams Billie Tsien Architects


Louise Richardson
Vice-Chancellor, University of Oxford

April 2016 - Class 1

Class 1: Mathematical & Physical Sciences

Joanna Aizenberg
Amy Smith Berylson Professor of Materials Science, Director, Kavli Institute for Bionano Science and Technology, Founding Core Faculty and Platform Leader, Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering, Professor of Chemistry and Chemical Biology, Harvard University

Cynthia Dwork
Distinguished Scientist, Microsoft Research, Silicon Valley Campus

James B. Hartle
Research Professor, Professor of Physics Emeritus, University of California, Santa Barbara; External Professor, Santa Fe Institute

Stephen J. Lippard
Arthur Amos Noyes Professor of Chemistry, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Alar Toomre
Professor of Applied Math Emeritus, Massachusetts Institute of Technology


Jocelyn Bell Burnell
Visiting Professor, Department of Physics, Professorial Fellow, Mansfield College, University of Oxford; President, Royal Society of Edinburgh; Pro-Chancellor, Trinity College Dublin

Christopher John Pethick
Professor of Physics, Nordic Institute for Theoretical Physics

April 2016 - Class 2

Class 2: Biological Sciences

Ronald M. Fairman
Professor of Surgery, Chief of Vascular Surgery and Endovascular Therapy, University of Pennsylvania

Ann Martin Graybiel
Institute Professor, Investigator, McGovern Institute for Brain Research, Affiliate, Picower Center for Learning and Memory, Professor of Neuroscience, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Carol W. Greider
Daniel Nathans Professor, Director, Department of Molecular Biology and Genetics, Bloomberg Distinguished Professor, Department of Biology, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine

Eric Knudsen
Professor of Neurobiology, Stanford University School of Medicine

Michael A. Marletta
Professor of Chemistry, Professor of Biochemistry, C.H. and Annie Li Chair in the Molecular Biology of Diseases, University of California, Berkeley

Allan C. Spradling
Staff Member, Director, Department of Embryology, Carnegie Institution of Washington; Investigator, Howard Hughes Medical Institute; Adjunct Professor of Biology, Adjunct Professor of Molecular Biology and Genetics, Johns Hopkins University

April 2016 - Class 3

Class 3: Social Sciences

Paul DiMaggio
Professor of Sociology, New York University; A. Barton Hepburn Professor Emeritus of Sociology and Public Affairs, Princeton University

Thomas C. Holt
James Westfall Thompson Distinguished Service Professor of American and African American History, University of Chicago

Sara McLanahan
William S. Tod Professor of Sociology and Public Affairs, Director, Center for Research on Child Wellbeing, Princeton University

Rogers M. Smith
Christopher H. Browne Distinguished Professor of Political Science, Chair, Penn Program on Democracy, Citizenship, and Constitutionalism, University of Pennsylvania

Richard White
Margaret Byrne Professor of American History, Stanford University


Gerd Gigerenzer
Director, Max Planck Institute for Human Development; Director, Harding Center for Risk Literacy

April 2016 - Class 4

Class 4: Humanities

Yve-Alain Bois
Professor, School of Historical Studies, Institute for Advanced Study

Ellen T. Harris
Class of 1949 Professor of Music Emeritus, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Alexander Nehamas
Edmund N. Carpenter II Class of 1943 Professor in the Humanities, Professor of Philosophy, Professor of Comparative Literature, Princeton University

Lothar von Falkenhausen
Professor, Department of the History of Art, Director, East Asian Archaeology, Cotsen Institute of Archaeology, University of California, Los Angeles

Irene J. Winter
William Dorr Boardman Professor of Fine Arts Emerita, Harvard University


Marilyn Strathern
William Wyse Professor of Social Anthropology Emerita, University of Cambridge

April 2016 - Class 5

Class 5: The Arts, Professions, Leaders in Public and Private Affairs

Donald M. Berwick
Fellow, Center for American Progress

Suzanne Farrell
Founder and Artistic Director, Suzanne Farrell Ballet, Francis Eppes Professor of Dance, Florida State University

Roger W. Ferguson
President and Chief Executive Officer, TIAA

Jon R. Friedman

Risa J. Lavizzo-Mourey
President, Chief Executive Officer, Robert Wood Johnson Foundation

Jane Mayer
Staff Writer, The New Yorker

Joyce Carol Oates
Novelist, Playwright, Poet, Short Story Writer, Professor, Roger S. Berlind '52 Professor in the Humanities, Professor of Creative Writing, Emerita, Princeton University


David Adjaye
Founder, Principal Architect, Adjaye Associates