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1994 › Simon Moss
16th Farfel Recipient

Department of Physics
M. D. Anderson Distinguished Professor of Physics
College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics

Born in New York and educated at MIT, Simon Moss found his way to Houston only gradually, with several stops along the way. Professor Moss served as a professor in the department of metallurgy and materials science at MIT before traveling to Melbourne, Australia, as a Guggenheim Memorial Foundation Fellow. In the early 1970s he took a position in industry, but by 1972, he had joined the physics department at the University of Houston.

Here Professor Moss has continued his research, in addition to teaching undergraduates and training over 50 graduate students and postdoctoral fellows. His efforts have been amply rewarded, both by the University of Houston, which granted him a Research Excellence Award in 1990, and by a number of international physics and science societies. In 1975, for example, he was elected Fellow of the American Physical Society. In 1979, he received the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation Senior Scientist Award, and in 1993, he received the David Adler Lectureship Award from the American Physical Society. Most recently, in 1994, he shared the Max Planck Research Award with Professor J.S. Peisl of Munich.

Despite the multitude of awards and tributes Professor Moss has received, he maintains that the Esther Farfel Award, which he received in 1994, is among the most important. Receiving the Farfel, Professor Moss explains, “represents as nice a thing as a university can do. It’s really a way for the university to say ‘thank you—we’re pleased to have you here.’ Looking back on my career, I don’t think there’s much more that the university can do for me than it has already done.And that really is a very good feeling.”

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