Yesterday was a cause for great celebration in the physics department at UCSB. Gary Horowitz was elected to the National Academy of Sciences.
Of course, this is a great honor for UCSB, and we all think Gary is very deserving of such recognition. Gary has been one of the champions of pushing towards understanding gravity in higher dimensions. His most cited paper was the one that introduced Calabi-Yau manifolds to superstrings. At the time it was thought that there were very few such objects. Now we know better.
He has done a lot of other stuff, much too much to mention. Lately, he has been applying supergravity in higher dimensions to the study of superconductivity via various gauge/gravity dualities. He is great to have around and he is one of the nicest persons I know.
Apart from various rounds of clapping we also heard from some of the other members of the NAS that reside in the physics department as to what the nomination entails. First, the members receive a bill for their dues to the academy. Secondly, they get a lot of extra e-mail (some might call it spam). Third, they get to sit on even more committees that do important stuff. They also get an extra line in their resume.