Woman Physicist of the Month

A program of the APS’s Committee on the Status of Women in Physics (CSWP), the Woman Physicist of the Month highlights exceptional female physicists. The award recognizes female physicists who have positively impacted other individuals’ lives and careers.


Woman Physicist of February 2017

Rae Robertson-Anderson, University of San Diego

Headshot of Rae AndersonDr. Rae Robertson-Anderson is Associate Professor and Chair of the Physics and Biophysics Department at the University of San Diego (USD) where she has been a faculty member since 2009. In 2012, she was awarded a DOD AFOSR Young Investigator Program Award for her work with entangled DNA molecules. A few months later, she earned an NSF Career Award, and has developed a novel fluorescence force-measuring optical tweezers diagnostic with which she can track single molecules in complex actin networks. Dr. Anderson created a new, advanced biophysics laboratory course where undergraduate students learn to assemble optical tweezers and then pursue research projects. She has built a thriving undergraduate research program, and was invited to give a talk at the APS March Meeting 2016 about its successes. She has also sparked an increase in female students declaring majors in biophysics, bringing the overall percentage of female physics majors at USD up to 40%. Read More

How to Nominate

Email the following information to women@aps.org:

  • Nominee's name, institution, and email
  • Nominator's name, institution, and email
  • Nominee's CV
  • 1 - 3 paragraphs about the nominee and why she is worthy of recognition

Note that the nomination statement will serve as the text for the profile page on the CSWP site, so please write accordingly. CSWP reserves the right to edit the profile.

Nominations will be accepted on a rolling basis. 

Nomination Criteria

  • APS membership is not required.
  • A woman doing any physics-related work.
  • Has had an impact on your life or career.
  • Worthy of recognition.


Additional Information

The CSWP Woman Physicist of the Month program has been featured in APS News.
Gray Arrow APS Starts New Recognition Program for Women

2017 Women Physicists of the Month

Previously Recognized Women of the Month

2016  |  2015  |  2014  |  2013  |  2012