Who is Subra Suresh, the Indian-American scientist Joe Biden awarded the National Medal of Science?
Top Indian-American scientist Dr. Subra Suresh on Tuesday received the prestigious National Medal of Science from US President Joe Biden for pioneering research across engineering, physical sciences, and life sciences.
Biden presented the prestigious science medal to nine people on Tuesday. Subra Suresh particularly received the award for advancing the study of material science and its application to other disciplines.
The announcement from the National Science and Technology Medals Foundation noted Suresh's commitment to research and collaboration across international borders, which has demonstrated how science can forge understanding and cooperation among people and nations.
Who is Subra Suresh?
Suresh is the former head of the National Science Foundation. He is a professor at large at Brown University's School of Engineering, as per PTI reports.
“It's very satisfying," said Suresh, who said he takes special pride in the recognition because of what the medal signifies, according to a Brown University statement.
Born in India in 1956, Suresh graduated from high school at 15 and by age 25, had earned his undergraduate degree, master’s degree, and Ph.D., which he earned in mechanical engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in just two years.
He then became a faculty member at Brown University in 1983 as the youngest member of the engineering faculty. After 10 years at Brown, Suresh went on to become the first Asian-born American to lead the National Science Foundation (NSF), serving as its 13th director after he was nominated by then-president, Barack Obama.
In September 2023, he returned to Brown's School of Engineering. Earlier this month, the school announced a biennial symposium in his honor focused on the frontiers of technology and society, PTI reported.
Under his leadership, NSF launched the Global Research Council, a virtual organization of heads of science and engineering funding agencies from more than 50 countries, aimed at fostering global collaboration and data sharing.
He also oversaw the establishment of the Centre-Life Balance program, an initiative to increase the number of doctoral-level women in the science and engineering fields from 26 percent to 40 percent between 2011 and 2021.