Ross Presents 2010-2011 NSF ADVANCE Women of Excellence Awards

Primary tabs

Architecture Professor Ellen Dunham-Jones and City and Regional Planning doctoral student Ning Ai have received the 2010-2011 Women of Excellence Award from the Georgia Tech College of Architecture’s National Science Foundation ADVANCE Program.

Dunham-Jones, recipient of the Women of Excellence Faculty Award ($1,500), has received an increasing amount of attention as a thought leader focused on the problems and potentials of suburban development since the publication of her book, Retrofitting Suburbia, in 2008 with co-author June Williamson. She is in great demand as a speaker to professional and civic organizations, discussions of her research have been featured in TimeMagazine, the New York Times, National Public Radio, and TED conferences, among a host of others. Her book, now in its second edition, has been named winner in the Architecture & Urban Planning category of the 2009 American Publishers Awards for Professional and Scholarly Excellence (The PROSE Awards) awarded by the Professional and Scholarly Publishing (PSP) division of the Association of American Publishers. As a faculty member, Professor Dunham-Jones has provided an example to younger faculty, both male and female, through her own career of patient, focused effort toward the pursuit of important goals. As Director of the Architecture Program for eight years, she championed the advancement of faculty diversity and the success of new hires.

Doctoral candidate Ning Ai, recipient of the Women of Excellence Graduate Award ($800), is described as an exceptionally bright, motivated and hard working student in the School of City and Regional Planning. As the senior research assistant on National Science Foundation grants, her performance has been outstanding. She has surpassed her fellow research assistants, taken on project management duties; helped prepare grant proposals, workshops, annual reports and articles; and has given numerous presentations. Much of the research she has undertaken over the course of our grant has required the acquisition of new skills, which she eagerly sought. Ms. Ai’s dissertation looks at waste avoidance and waste management through a planning lens, a neglected topic in the field which demonstrates that planning has important tools to offer for more sustainable solid waste management. Her demonstrated excellence in research and scholarship points to a very promising career after she graduates. She is often sought out by other students for advice and she is well respected by faculty in the School of City and Regional Planning. Additionally, she shows strong signs of being an institution builder via her participation in student governance, college level committees and an officer in a professional association. She recently was offered a faculty position and will bring significant talent to that institution.

The Women of Excellence Undergraduate Award ($500) has not yet been awarded.

As ADVANCE Professor in the Georgia Tech College of Architecture, Catherine Ross solicits nominations and presents the Women of Excellence awards. Ross is Harry West Professor of City and Regional Planning and director of the Center for Quality Growth and Regional Development. Awards are presented annually to individuals who have distinguished themselves through professional leadership, mentoring, academic excellence and sustained service on behalf of the Georgia Institute of Technology and to the College of Architecture. Read more about the ADVANCE Program at Georgia Tech.

The 2009-2010 award winners were Professor Nancey Green Leigh in the School of City and Regional Planning, doctoral student Paola Sanguinetti in the School of Architecture and undergraduate senior and Krystal Persaud in the School of Industrial Design. The 2008-2009 winners were Professor Elizabeth M. "Betty" Dowling in the School of Architecture, for her years of scholarship, the exceptional quality of her work and for effectively mentoring graduate students in her field; doctoral student Jessica Doyle in the School of City and Regional Planning and undergraduate senior Shannon Barnes in the School of Building Construction.


  • Workflow Status: Published
  • Created By: Michelle Marcus
  • Created: 05/04/2011
  • Modified By: Fletcher Moore
  • Modified: 10/07/2016


No categories were selected.


No keywords were submitted.

Target Audience