JANUARY 26, 2022 — Three senior faculty members from The University of Texas at San Antonio were elected as 2021 Fellows for the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). They are James Chambers (Molecular Microbiology and Immunology), Aimin Liu (Chemistry) and Angela Speck (Physics & Astronomy), all from the UTSA College of Sciences.
Founded in 1848, the AAAS is the world's largest general scientific society. The tradition of electing AAAS Fellows began in 1874 to recognize members for their scientifically or socially distinguished efforts to advance science or its applications. Elected by the Council of the AAAS, these UTSA researchers were chosen for their efforts to advance science in their designated disciplines.
“I am excited and proud that this honor will be bestowed on our three College of Sciences colleagues. Each of them are exemplars of our COS faculty excellence in the areas of science advocacy, impactful research, and student training at the undergraduate and graduate levels,” said David Silva, dean of the UTSA College of Sciences.
James Chambers, Ph.D., is a professor in the Department of Molecular Microbiology and Immunology. An established biochemist of long standing with national and international recognized expertise, he specializes in the enzymology of inherited lysosomal storage diseases, glyconjugate characterization, receptor mediated channel function, and biosensor sensing element development. He is a member of the South Texas Center for Emerging Infectious Diseases. In 1992, Chambers implemented the first free-standing Ph.D. program at UTSA and trained its first two students. Chambers is being honored for “distinguished development of threat agent detection, innovative contributions to the understanding of Francisella tularensis, and the promotion of scholarship and scientific discovery in teaching and public outreach.
Aimin Liu, Ph.D., is the Lutcher Brown Distinguished Chair in Biochemistry in the Department of Chemistry. His research group studies metalloprotein-based biological processes and chemical mechanisms. Liu has contributed to understanding oxygen activation by metalloenzymes and protein-based free radicals in electron/radical transfer processes in chemistry and biology. The chemistry, biochemistry, and biophysics communities appreciate his interdisciplinary and highly productive research program, which has been well-supported by the National Institutes of Health and the National Science Foundation. Liu is being honored for “distinguished contributions to the fields of structural and mechanistic enzymology, particularly the chemistry of tryptophan metabolism, protein-derived cofactor biosynthesis, and charge resonance stabilization in the generation of protein radicals.
Angela Speck, Ph.D., is a professor of astrophysics and chair of the Department of Physics & Astronomy. She specializes in infrared astronomy and the study of space dust including many aspects of material ejected by dying stars. She is co-chair of the National Total Solar Eclipse Task Force, and she served as chair the User Committee of the National Optical Astronomy Observatory and a member of the American Astronomical Society Council. Speck is being honored for “distinguished contributions to interdisciplinary understanding of the effects of stardust across our cosmos, as well as for extensive service to the astronomy community and in exceptional public outreach.
“The election of these best-in-class academics and researchers positions our institution in being recognized as a premier, discovery-focused, research institution. This election, by our peers, is one of the pinnacles of a researcher’s career,” added Bernard Arulanandam, UTSA vice president for Research, Economic Development and Knowledge Enterprise.
The nominations were sponsored by current fellows and the Office of the Vice President for Research, Economic Development, and Knowledge Enterprise.
Chambers, Liu, and Speck will be formally inducted in-person at a future AAAS annual meeting.
The Racial Justice Book Club was established at UTSA by members of the campus community to explore social justice following acts of racial violence across the nation over the last few years. We are reading The Injustice Never Leaves You: Anti-Mexican Violence in Texas by Monica Muñoz Martinez. We will meet every Wednesday in September and October at 2 pm on Zoom.Virtual Event
We invite you to learn about the process of screenwriting and explore the intersection of identity and pursuing dreams from Jorge Ramirez-Martinez and Raymond Perez, screenwriters for the Selena: The Series, released on Netflix. They will discuss their careers and writing process, including how their identities as Mexican American and gay men have shaped their professional experiences.Virtual Event
Please join us in remembering those who have entered the next part of life by designing a nicho box in their memory. This workshop will provide the necessary items to create your nicho box, though please remember to bring a photo or small object that can fit in a 3.5 x5x1 inch box (small jewelry box).John Peace Library GroupSpot B, Main Campus
Come celebrate the end of Hispanic Heritage Month with La Comunidad at The University of Texas at San Antonio. We will have food, games and dancing!H-E-B Student Union Ballroom 1 & 2, Main Campus
LMSA invites you to join us in celebrating National Hispanic Heritage Month through an interactive cooking lesson! This cultural experience will teach you how to prepare a popular Mexican dish, street taquitos. You will be able to sample this dish and learn the recipe to use in your own home.Recreation Wellness Center Demo Kitchen
Future Roadrunners will see what Roadrunner life is all about at UTSA Day. All of Main Campus transforms into our UTSA Day open house for Future Roadrunners and their families to explore the university experience.Main Campus
Learn about the LGBTQIA+ community and being an Ally and advocate for LGBTQIA+ people, communities, and the issues that impact the LGBTQIA+ community.Multicultural Student Center for Equity and Justice Lounge, Main Campus
The University of Texas at San Antonio is dedicated to the advancement of knowledge through research and discovery, teaching and learning, community engagement and public service. As an institution of access and excellence, UTSA embraces multicultural traditions and serves as a center for intellectual and creative resources as well as a catalyst for socioeconomic development and the commercialization of intellectual property - for Texas, the nation and the world.
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We encourage an environment of dialogue and discovery, where integrity, excellence, inclusiveness, respect, collaboration and innovation are fostered.
UTSA is a proud Hispanic Serving Institution (HSI) as designated by the U.S. Department of Education.
The University of Texas at San Antonio, a Hispanic Serving Institution situated in a global city that has been a crossroads of peoples and cultures for centuries, values diversity and inclusion in all aspects of university life. As an institution expressly founded to advance the education of Mexican Americans and other underserved communities, our university is committed to ending generations of discrimination and inequity. UTSA, a premier public research university, fosters academic excellence through a community of dialogue, discovery and innovation that embraces the uniqueness of each voice.