U archeologist appointed to national science academy

James O’Connell, professor of archeology, was elected to the National Academy of Sciences in April.

O’Connell is the third member of the U’s 14-member archeology department to be elected to the academy.

“This is very unusual for a department of this size,” O’Connell said.

Other universities’ archeology departments, including those at Harvard, Michigan and Berkeley, have three or more members elected to the National Academy of Sciences.

The National Academy of Sciences is an honorary society that acknowledges scientists doing research in the fields of science and engineering.

O’Connell was elected along with 71 other new members and 18 foreign associates at the Academy’s 143rd annual meeting.

O’Connell is currently working on research involving the pre-European history of Australia and the tuber exploitation in the Great Basin.

The U has had 29 other professors who have been elected to the National Academy of Sciences, including Peter Stang, chemist; Thure Cerling, geologist and geochemist; Henry Harpending, anthropologist; Kristen Hawkes, anthropologist; Cheves Walling, chemist; Mario Capecchi, geneticist; Sidney Velick, biochemist; John R. Roth, biologist; Josef Michl, geneticist and Jeremy Sabloff, anthropologist