The Bradford Washburn Award, a golden medal carrying with it an honorarium, is given annually to those who have made an outstanding contribution toward public understanding and appreciation of science and the vital role it plays in our lives. The award, named for the explorer-cartographer who served as director of the Museum from 1939 – 1980, is made possible by the generosity of an anonymous donor who believed deeply in both the people and the mission of the Museum.
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Alison Gopnik, PhD, Professor of Psychology at the University of California, Berkeley
Salman Khan, Founder of Khan Academy
Museum of Science
Recommended for: Visitors 21 years of age and older
Alison Gopnik is a professor of psychology and affiliate professor of philosophy at the University of California at Berkeley, where she has taught since 1988. She received her BA from McGill University and her PhD from Oxford University. She is a world leader in cognitive science, particularly the study of children's learning and development. She is the author of over 100 journal articles and several books, including the bestselling and critically acclaimed popular books The Scientist in the Crib (William Morrow, 1999), The Philosophical Baby: What Children's Minds Tell Us about Truth, Love, and the Meaning of Life (Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2009), and The Gardener and the Carpenter: What the New Science of Child Development Tells Us About the Relationship Between Parents and Children (Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2016). She is a fellow of the Cognitive Science Society and a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.
She writes the Mind and Matter science column for the Wall Street Journal. She has also written widely about cognitive science and psychology for The New Yorker, Science, The New York Times, The Atlantic, The Times Literary Supplement, The New York Review of Books, New Scientist, and Slate, among others. She has frequently appeared on TV and radio, including The Charlie Rose Show and The Colbert Report. Her TED talk has been seen over 2.75 million times. She has three sons and three grandchildren and lives in Berkeley, California with her husband Alvy Ray Smith.
Photo Courtesy of Alison Gopnik, PhD
Salman "Sal" Khan is the founder of Khan Academy, a nonprofit with a mission of providing a free, world-class education for anyone, anywhere.
Khan Academy started as a passion project. Sal's cousin was struggling with math. He tutored her remotely and posted educational videos on YouTube. So many people watched the videos that eventually Sal pursued Khan Academy full-time. Nearly ten years later, more than 52 million registered users access Khan Academy in dozens of languages across 190 countries.
Sal is a former Teacher of the Year at Princeton Review, where he taught physics, biology, and chemistry to MCAT students. Sal had a fellowship at MIT to research educational software.
Sal has been profiled by 60 Minutes, featured on the cover of Forbes, and recognized as one of TIME's "100 Most Influential People in the World." In his book The One World Schoolhouse: Education Reimagined, Sal outlines his vision for the future of education. Sal holds three degrees from MIT and a MBA from Harvard Business School.
Today Khan Academy's free online learning resources cover preschool through early college education, including K – 12 math, grammar, biology, chemistry, physics, economics, finance, history and SAT prep. Khan Academy also provides teachers with tools and data so they can help their students develop the skills, habits, and mindsets they need to succeed in school and beyond. And it's all free, for everyone, forever.
Photo Courtesy of Salman Khan
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