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Jay Labov, PhD

Jay Labov, PhD

Former Senior Advisor for Education
and Communication, Retired
The National Academies of Sciences,
Engineering and Medicine

Before retiring in November 2018, Jay Labov was a staff member at the National Academies of Sciences,  Engineering, and Medicine for 23 years, most recently serving as Senior Advisor for Education and  Communication. He directed or contributed to 30+ National Academies STEM reports focusing on pre-college,  undergraduate and teacher education, advanced study for high school students, and international education.  He served as Director of the National Academies’ Teacher Advisory Council, and was Deputy Director for the  Academy's Center for Education. He directed a committee of the NAS and the Institute of Medicine (now the  Academy of Medicine) that authored Science, Evolution, and Creationism and oversaw the National Academy  of Sciences' efforts to confront challenges to teaching evolution in the nation’s public schools. He coordinated  efforts at the Academies to work with professional societies on education issues. He also oversaw work on  improving education in the life sciences under the aegis of the Academy’s Board on Life Sciences. 

Dr. Labov is an organismal biologist by training. Prior to accepting his position at the National Academies in  1997, he spent 18 years on the biology faculty at Colby College (Maine). He is a Kellogg National Fellow, a  Fellow in Education of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, a Council of Independent  Colleges (formerly Woodrow Wilson) Visiting Fellow, and a 2013 recipient of the "Friend of Darwin" award from  the National Center for Science Education. In 2013 he was elected to a three-year term beginning in 2014 in  which he served as chair-elect for 2014, chair for 2015 and past chair for 2016 of the Education Section of the  American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). He was subsequently elected to a three-year  term to represent the Education Section on the AAAS Council beginning in 2017 and to a two-year term on the  Council’s Executive Committee beginning in 2018. In 2014 he was named a Lifetime Honorary Member by the  National Association of Biology Teachers, that organization’s highest award and recognition. He received an  Academies Staff Award for Lifetime Achievement in December, 2014 and was named by the Society for  Integrative and Comparative Biology as the John A. Moore Lecturer for 2016. 

Labov  also received the  Distinguished Service to Science Education Award from the National Science Teachers Association in April,  2016. In May 2018 he received the Leadership in Science and Engineering Award from the Washington (DC)  Academy of Sciences. In June 2018 he received an award from President Samuel Stanley Jr., President of  Stony Brook University, for Advancing Civic Engagement and Socially Beneficial Science and Engineering. In  2019 he was appointed as Chair of the education committee of the International Society for Evolution,  Medicine, and Public Health and as a Fulbright Specialist by the U.S. Department of State.  

Since retiring from the National Academies, he has been professionally active as a STEM education  consultant, including projects for the National Academy of Engineering and George Mason University’s Stearns  Center for Teaching and Learning. He is a member of several boards and committees including the TERC  Board of Trustees, Governance Modernization Committee and the Dialog on Science, Ethics and Religion for  the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS); Vertically Integrated Projects Consortium;  and the STEM Teacher Leaders Network. He has led an external review of biology programs at the University  of Rochester and to help faculty and academic administrators at DePaul University focus on the restructuring  of their introductory STEM courses in his role as a Council of Independent Colleges Visiting Fellow. He has  offered two mini-courses on “How Science Works,” a separate mini-course on “Unpacking the Science of  Evolution,” and a presentation on “Unpacking the Science of Learning to Improve the Learning of Science” for  the Lifelong Learning Institute under the aegis of Northern Virginia Community College. He serves as the Chair  of the Education Committee for the International Society for Evolution, Medicine, and Public Health, is the  Society’s primary organizer for its 2023 annual meeting in Irvine, CA, and is leading a panel that is submitting a  proposal the National Science Foundation to strengthen diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging within the  Society and across the field of Evolutionary Medicine. He is an Associate Editor for the Society’s Journal,  Evolution, Medicine, and Public Health, and has organized several in-person and virtual events for the  Society’s annual meetings. Dr. Labov also has served as a volunteer at a local elementary school, working with  science and STEM teachers and their students as part of AAAS’s STEM Volunteer Program and is a member  of the executive committee for this volunteer program in Fairfax County, VA. He was awarded the William  Bennett Prize by the National Center for Science and Civic Engagement in 2020.