November 2010 home page

  Signs of Genius: recognized by MacArthur
Anthony Corso | Stratford Court


Carol Padden, 2010 MacArthur Fellow
Photo courtesy: James D. and Catherine T MacArthur Foundation

Carol Padden, a Del Mar resident and scholar of sign languages at the University of California has been named a 2010 MacArthur Fellow, and awarded what is commonly known as a “genius grant”-- $500,000 in “no strings attached” support over the next five years to pursue her personal and professional interests.

Padden, who was born deaf, is cited for work that demystifies sign languages and demonstrates how language evolves over time and has a pivotal role in building and maintaining communities.

The MacArthur award recognizes talented individuals in a variety of fields who have shown exceptional originality and dedication to their creative pursuits. Recipients of the award are nominated anonymously by leaders in their respective fields and learn that they have won by phone “out of the blue” a few days before the public announcement.

In reaction to the news, Padden said, “I was completely caught off guard and I’m dumbfounded. I have been working on sign languages for thirty years—my entire career. It’s very rewarding to feel that after all these years people recognize what you’ve done.”


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