Dr. Robert B. McKersie, deputy dean and Sloan Fellows Professor of Management at the Sloan School, has become a union-designated director of Inland Steel Industries, Inc. and Inland Steel Company.
His election fulfills the terms of an innovative, six-year labor agreement between Inland Steel and the United Steelworkers of America reached in July 1993. The labor agreement allowed the Steelworkers to designate as a director a person who is acceptable to the Board of Inland Steel Industries.
Dr. McKersie has spent his academic career researching labor relations. "I'd like to prove the point that by having workers and union input, US companies will be strengthened and we can solve major competitive issues," he said at a recent meeting with Inland Steel's top union and company officials.
Professor Elzbieta Ettinger Chodakowska of the Program in Writing and Humanistic Studies has received a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities to work on her biography of Hannah Arendt, the German Jewish philosopher, political theorist and literary critic. The biography will be based on unpublished documents and correspondence and on interviews with friends and colleagues of Dr. Arendt. Professor Chodakowska is the author of several novels and a biography of Rosa Luxemburg.
Dr. Mark Harvey, lecturer in music, has been named to the Faculty Advisory Council on the Arts at Harvard University's Center for the Study of World Religions.
Dr. S. Lael Brainard, assistant professor of management, was one of eight Massachusetts residents named in February as regional finalists for 1994 White House fellowships. Regional panels will choose about 33 national finalists to be interviewed by the President's Commission on White House Fellowships, which will make final recommendations to President Clinton in June. Fewer than 20 persons win fellowships each year.
White House fellows spend a year as full-time paid asssistants to senior administration staff, including the vice president and Cabinet secretaries.
The American Meteorological Society has named Igor D. Gonta, a senior in electrical science and engineering, as the 1994 recipient of the Robert Leviton Award "for his paper describing a calibrated Franklin Chimes to measure atmospheric potential."
Robert Leviton devoted his career to the measurement of wind, temperature, pressure and humidity in the atmosphere. The award in his name is presented to the best student paper on the development or evaluation of atmospheric instrumentation or unique measurement techniques.
Dr. Carl V. Thompson, professor of electronic materials in the Department of Materials Science and Engineering, has been elected second vice president of the Materials Research Society, which will be headed this year by John C. Bravman of Stanford University.
Julia M. Phillips of AT&T Bell Laboratories was elected first vice president. Professors Phillips and Thomson also serve on the organization's Executive Committee. Professor Thompson is a member of the Class of 1976 at MIT.
A version of this article appeared in the March 16, 1994 issue of MIT Tech Talk (Volume 38, Number 26).