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President and CEO Joel Seligman Elected to American Academy of Arts and Sciences

University of Rochester President and CEO Joel Seligman is one of 213 new members of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. (University photo / J. Adam Fenster)
University President and CEO Joel Seligman is one of 213 new members of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. (University photo / J. Adam Fenster)

University President and CEO Joel Seligman has been elected to membership in one of the country’s oldest and most highly regarded honorary learned societies, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.

As one of this spring’s 213 new members, Seligman, who also holds the title of G. Robert Witmer, Jr. University Professor, joins a roster that includes winners of the Pulitzer Prize and the Wolf Prize; MacArthur and Guggenheim Fellowships; the Fields Medal; and the Grammy Award and National Book Award. The members of the academy’s 236th class (see a full list) will be formally inducted at a ceremony on October 8 in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

Founded in 1780, the academy also represents one of the country’s oldest independent policy research centers, convening leaders from the academic, business, and government sectors to respond to the challenges facing the nation and the world. Members contribute to academy publications and studies of science, engineering, and technology policy; global security and international affairs; the humanities, arts, and education; and American institutions and the public good.

Seligman, who became Rochester’s 10th president in 2005, is a noted expert on U.S. securities law. He coauthored, with the late Louis Loss and with Troy Paredes, the 11-volume Securities Regulation, the leading treatise in the field, and is author of The Transformation of Wall Street: A History of the Securities and Exchange Commission and Modern Corporate Finance. He also is the author or coauthor of 20 books and more than 40 articles on legal issues related to securities and corporations. He served on the board of the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority from 2007 to 2015.

As president, he has led a period of remarkable growth for the University, driven by a strategic planning process and by the The Meliora Challenge, the University’s $1.2 billion fundraising campaign. Seligman also has served in several leadership roles within the Rochester community, including positions on the boards of the Greater Rochester Enterprise and the Greater Rochester Chamber of Commerce, and at the state level, most notably as cochair of the Finger Lakes Regional Economic Development Council.

Seligman came to Rochester from the Washington University School of Law, where he was dean and Ethan A. H. Shepley University Professor from 1999 to 2005. He had previously been dean and Samuel M. Fegtly Professor of Law at the University of Arizona, and had served on the law faculties at Michigan, George Washington, and Northeastern.

Seligman is a graduate of the University of California at Los Angeles and Harvard Law School.

As a member of the academy, Seligman joins several University community members who have been inducted, such as current faculty members Richard Eisenberg, the Tracy Harris Professor Emeritus in the Department of Chemistry; Joanna Scott, the Roswell S. Burrows Professor of English; Stanley Engerman, the John H. Munro Professor of Economics and professor of history; Michael Tanenhaus, the Beverly Petterson Bishop and Charles W. Bishop Professor of Brain and Cognitive Sciences and Linguistics; John (Jack) Werren, the Nathaniel and Helen Wisch Professor of Biology; Richard Aslin, the William R. Kenan Jr. Professor in the Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences; Lynne Maquat, the J. Lowell Orbison Distinguished Service Alumni Professor in the Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics; and Richard Fenno Jr., Distinguished University Professor Emeritus in the Department of Political Science. Former faculty members who were inducted include the late Esther Conwell ’45 (MA) and the late poet Anthony Hecht.

Alumni members include the late Nobel Prize laureate Arthur Kornberg ’41M (MD), operatic soprano and Grammy Award winner Renée Fleming ’83E (MM), Donald Henderson ’54M (MD), an epidemiologist whose led the worldwide effort to eradicate smallpox, and John (Jack) Rowe ’70M (MD), the Julius B. Richmond Professor of Health Policy and Aging at the Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health.

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