Honoring trio of high-achieving alumni
»View a video of the Alumni Achievement Awards presentation.
Brandeis President Fred Lawrence presented the Alumni Achievement Award to University of Chicago President Robert Zimmer ’68, renowned music manager and record producer Jon Landau ’68 and pioneering mathematics professor Bonnie Berger ’83 at a ceremony on June 8 during Reunion weekend.
The Alumni Achievement Award recognizes alumni who have made distinguished contributions to their professions or chosen fields of endeavor. It represents the highest form of University recognition bestowed exclusively on alumni.
“The presentation of the Alumni Achievement Awards is always a great occasion for the University,” Lawrence said. “We take great pride in the accomplishments of this year’s recipients, and Brandeis is honored to have played a key role in their lives.”
Robert J. Zimmer ’68 has served as president of the University of Chicago since 2006, helping to institute major initiatives, including increased financial aid for students, an expansion of the faculty, the launch of several multidisciplinary research institutions, the establishment of new programs and facilities in the arts, and the growth of the university’s global profile. A mathematician who specializes in geometry, he joined the school’s faculty in 1977 and has served as chair of the math department and deputy provost. Zimmer is a member of the National Science Board and a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.
Jon Landau ’68 (left, with President Lawrence) began his career in the world of pop music while a student at Brandeis, as a critic for The Justice. After graduation he continued his career in journalism, and he famously wrote in 1974, “I saw rock and roll future and its name is Bruce Springsteen.” He wound up spending the next 40 years working with Springsteen, first as a record producer and then as his manager. He has also collaborated with many other artists, including the MC5, Livingston Taylor, Jackson Browne, Natalie Merchant, Shania Twain, Train and Alejandro Escovedo. He is an executive vice president of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, where he chairs the committee on nominations.
Bonnie Berger ’83 serves as professor of applied mathematics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and in 1999 became the first woman to earn tenure in the school’s math department. Her research focuses on applying mathematical techniques to solve problems in molecular biology. She has co-authored more than 100 scholarly research articles. Her numerous honors include membership in the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.