Catherine Dulac has been named a Harvard University Professor, only the 23rd to receive this title since its creation 87 years ago in 1935, and the first MCB faculty member with the honor.
“I feel greatly honored and privileged to be named Samuel W. Morris University Professor,” says Dulac. “Becoming University Professor will help me establish further collaborations across the different Schools at Harvard. I should also add that this distinction is very special to me because I am recognized both for my scientific accomplishments and my community engagement within MCB and the wider Harvard community.”
Dulac joined MCB in 1996 and earned a full professorship in 2001. For the past 26 years, Dulac has studied molecular and neuroscientific reasons behind social behavior in mice, with implications for better understanding the importance and intricacies of human connection and social groups.
“Joining the department of Molecular and Cellular Biology at Harvard as a junior faculty many years ago made it possible for me to pursue my long-time dream of teaching and doing research in neuroscience,” says Dulac. “This has been an exciting scientific journey with much hard work and great enjoyment, together with highly talented students, amazing lab members and inspiring colleagues.”
The Morris Professorship was established under the umbrella of University Professorships in 2002 to honor 1940 graduate Samuel W. Morris—a lawyer, a member of the Pennsylvania State House of Representatives, a dedicated land conservationist and advocate for historic preservation.
University Professorships acknowledge groundbreaking work that has made significant impacts across multiple fields. Being a University Professor frees honorees even further to pursue their interdisciplinary interests.
“The title of University Professor is awarded to only a few of Harvard’s very most distinguished faculty,” says Sean Eddy, the chair of MCB. “I’m very happy to see this well-deserved recognition of Catherine’s influential work, both as a world leader in neuroscience, and in tireless service to this university.”