The Maria Goeppert Mayer award, given by the American Physical Society (APS), recognizes and enhances outstanding achievement by a woman physicist in the early years of her career, and provides opportunities to present these achievements to others through public lectures in the spirit of Maria Goeppert Mayer. The 2011 award recipient is Prof. Reka Albert.
Dr. Albert received her B.S. and M.S. from the Babes-Bolyai University in Romania. She received her Ph.D. in Physics from the University of Notre Dame (2001), working with Prof. Albert-Laszlo Barabasi. Dr. Albert did postdoctoral research in mathematical biology at the University of Minnesota, working with Prof. Hans G. Othmer. She joined the Pennsylvania State University in 2003, where she currently is a Professor of Physics with adjunct appointments in the Department of Biology and the College of Information Science and Technology. Dr. Albert is a theorist who works on predictive modeling of biological regulatory networks at multiple levels of organization. Her pioneering publications on the structural properties of complex networks had a large impact on the field, reflected in their identification as "Fast breaking paper" and "High impact paper" by Thomson Reuters. Dr. Albert is a Fellow of the American Physical Society, where she served as a member at large in the Division of Biological Physics, and of the Society for Mathematical Biology. She was a recipient of a Sloan Research Fellowship (2004) and an NSF Career Award (2007). Her service to the profession includes serving on the editorial board of the journals Physical Review E, The New Journal of Physics, IET Systems Biology, the advisory board of the Mathematical Biosciences Institute and the Duke Center for Systems Biology, and as a peer reviewer for more than 35 journals.