Four Extraordinary Women Explorers Will Receive Awards April 23 in New York
New York, NY, March 8, 2019 – In celebration of International Women’s Day, WINGS WorldQuest™, a nonprofit organization that supports and recognizes extraordinary women in science and exploration, today announced the four recipients of the 2019 Women of Discovery Awards. On April 23, the four women scientists and explorers will each present their research and discoveries at WINGS’ Annual Fellows Forum and be inducted as WINGS Fellows at a cocktail reception in New York City.
The WINGS WorldQuest Women of Discovery Awards were established in 2003 to recognize and support extraordinary women making significant contributions to world knowledge and science through exploration. Unique to this honor and organization is the $10,000 unrestricted grant awarded to each Fellow, to use as she sees fit to advance her research, career and expeditions. In just 16 years, WINGS has made significant strides in advancing women in science and exploration, inducting 84 pioneering women as Fellows and granting over $600,000.
“We are proud to provide a platform that not only advances women’s roles in science and exploration, but also shines a light on the important contributions of women in these fields – contributions that are too often under-recognized,” said Beth Nixon, Board of Directors Chair, WINGS WorldQuest. “The Women of Discovery Awards support scientists today and inspire the explorers of tomorrow.”
The Women of Discovery Awards is an engaging celebration, with lively presentations of the Awardees’ latest discoveries at the Fellows Forum, followed by an awards presentation. Tickets for the Women of Discovery Awards Fellows Forum and Reception can be purchased at wingsworldquest.org.
2019 Fellows and Women of Discovery Award Recipients
MANDË HOLFORD, PH.D., HUMANITY AWARD
Mandë Holford’s laboratory investigates the power of venom to transform organisms and improve lives when it is adapted to create novel therapeutics for treating human diseases and disorders. She is as an Associate Professor in Chemistry at Hunter College and CUNY-Graduate Center, with scientific appointments at the American Museum of Natural History and Weill Cornell Medicine. Holford’s joint appointments reflect her interdisciplinary research, which ranges from mollusks to medicine, combining chemistry and biology to discover, characterize and deliver novel peptides from venomous marine snails as tools for manipulating cellular physiology in pain and cancer.
KRITHI K. KARANTH, PH.D., CONSERVATION AWARD
Krithi K. Karanth studies the impacts of wildlife tourism, voluntary resettlement, land-use change, conservation education and understanding human-wildlife interactions. She is Chief Conservation Scientist at the Centre for Wildlife Studies, Adjunct Faculty at Duke and National Centre for Biological Sciences and an Explorer with National Geographic Society. She has a Ph.D. in Environmental Science and Policy from Duke, a M.E.Sc. from Yale, and B.S. and B.A. degrees from University of Florida. Karanth’s research in India spans 20 years and includes publication of more than 90 scientific and popular articles in English and Kannada.
LALY LICHTENFELD, PH.D., CONSERVATION AWARD
Laly Lichtenfeld has dedicated her career to finding the balance for communities and nature. A nearly 20-year resident of Tanzania, Lichtenfeld co-founded African People & Wildlife in 2005 to help rural communities conserve and benefit from their wildlife and natural resources. Lichtenfeld specializes in wildlife conservation with a focus on lions and other big cats, community empowerment and engagement in natural resource management, and the development of conservation incentives for rural people. As a female CEO in East African conservation, Lichtenfeld is often one of few women at the senior leadership table, a responsibility she does not take lightly. In 2018, Lichtenfeld was invited to join the Ngorongoro Conservation Area Authority Research Advisory Committee.
DARLENE LIM, PH.D., AIR & SPACE AWARD
Darlene Lim is a geobiologist based at the NASA Ames Research Center in California. Lim leads several NASA-funded research programs that are focused on blending field science research with the development of capabilities and concepts for future human spaceflight into deep space and Mars. She is the Principal Investigator of the NASA-funded SUBSEA, BASALT and Pavilion Lake research programs, and the Deputy PI of the NASA SSERVI FINESSE research program. Lim has served on a number of NASA Mars Exploration Program Analysis Group committees and was the MEPAG Goal IV (Prepare for Human Exploration) Co-Chair from 2009-2016.
About WINGS WorldQuest™
WINGS WorldQuest™ is a registered nonprofit organization founded in 2003 to recognize and support extraordinary women in science and exploration. It is the only organization of its kind, awarding unrestricted funding to women in scientific field endeavors. WINGS’ support knows no boundaries—women of all races, nationalities, ages, and cultures who show initiative, passion, and promise toward future scientific advancement have been granted funds that are often critical to seeing their ambitious ideas through. In return, they have become part of the WINGS community, and strengthen the organization’s mission to inspire the next generation of intrepid explorers and global problem-solvers through various outreach programs. For more information, visit wingsworldquest.org.