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Dr. Willie May Division of Research & Economic Development

Morgan State VP of Research Willie E. May Selected to Serve as AAAS President-Elect

by Morgan State U
March 15, 2023

May to Begin His Term Immediately as President-Elect, Becoming President on Jan. 1, 2024, and Holding that Position for a Period of One-Year


WASHINGTON, D.C. — Members of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), the world’s largest general scientific society and publisher of the Science family of journals, elected Morgan State University’s Willie E. May, Ph.D., to serve as the association’s president-elect. May’s one-year term as president-elect begins immediately, followed by one year as AAAS president (and chair of the AAAS Annual Meeting), and one year as immediate past-president. Members also elected Kathleen Hall Jamieson, Ph.D., and Vassiliki Betty Smocovitis, Ph.D., to the AAAS Board of Directors.

“We are thrilled to welcome Willie, Kathleen, and Betty to the AAAS Board. Their expertise will be invaluable as we advance scientific excellence, expand who can participate in the STEMM ecosystem, address mis- and disinformation, and provide historical context on the scientific enterprise to inform strategic thinking. We are confident that these strong leaders will help achieve our vision, especially as we celebrate our 175th anniversary and focus on igniting progress for the next 175 years,” said Sudip S. Parikh, Ph.D., chief executive officer of AAAS and executive publisher of the Science family of journals.

May’s selection as president-elect is not Morgan’s first or only association with AAAS. This past December, three new fellows with Morgan ties were selected to join AAAS’ 50th class of the Science and Technology Policy Fellowships, and Professor of Biology Christine Hohmann, Ph.D., was elected as a 2021 AAAS Fellow joining 563 other scientists, engineers and innovators to receive the honor. In 2019, May was also elected as an AAAS Fellow.

“The members of the American Association for the Advancement of Science have made a great selection for the presidency of their organization with the election of Dr. Willie May. He is one of our nation’s top scientific minds and possesses the gravitas and thought leadership that will serve their organization well,” said David K. Wilson, president of Morgan State University. “I congratulate Dr. May in achieving such a prestigious leadership role with a national profile. His appointment will serve the scientific community well and is a great representation of the type of leaders we have on staff at Morgan.”

Dr. Willie MayMay serves as vice president of research and economic development and professor of chemistry at Morgan. He is currently a member of the AAAS Council for the Section on Industrial Science and Technology and serves, along with President Wilson, on the Advisory Council for the STEMM Opportunity Alliance, a cross-sector national initiative led by AAAS to galvanize stakeholders to achieve STEMM equity and excellence by 2050. Previously, he served as the U.S. Under Secretary of Commerce for Standards and Technology and director of the National Institute of Standards and Technology.

“I am honored to serve as the new president-elect of AAAS. During my term, I will prioritize partnering with key leaders to enhance the U.S. STEMM workforce by proposing ways the nation can expand access and opportunities to education. I stand ready to support AAAS as it embarks on a mission to transform the way the scientific enterprise realizes benefits to society at large,” said May.

The American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) is the world’s largest general scientific society and publisher of the journal Science, as well as Science Translational Medicine; Science Signaling; a digital, open-access journal, Science Advances; Science Immunology; and Science Robotics. AAAS was founded in 1848 and includes more than 250 affiliated societies and academies of science, serving 10 million individuals. The nonprofit AAAS is open to all and fulfills its mission to “advance science and serve society” through initiatives in science policy, international programs, science education, public engagement, and more.

About Morgan

Morgan State University, founded in 1867, is a Carnegie-classified high research (R2) institution offering more than 140 academic programs leading to degrees from the baccalaureate to the doctorate. As Maryland’s Preeminent Public Urban Research University, and the only university to have its entire campus designated as a National Treasure by the National Trust for Historic Preservation, Morgan serves a multiethnic and multiracial student body and seeks to ensure that the doors of higher education are opened as wide as possible to as many as possible. For more information about Morgan State University, visit

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Media Contacts:

Larry Jones or Dell Jackson, for University PR


Valeria Sabate, for AAAS
202 326 6440