Cathy J. Cohen, the David and Mary Winton Green Distinguished Service Professor in the College and the department of political science at the University of Chicago, received the 2021 Hanes Walton, Jr. Career Award from the American Political Science Association. The Walton Award honors a political scientist whose lifetime of distinguished scholarship has made significant contributions to the understanding of racial and ethnic politics and illuminates the conditions under which diversity and intergroup tolerance thrive in democratic societies.
The award is named for Hanes Walton, Jr. a graduate of Morehouse College in Atlanta who was the first student to earn a Ph.D. in government at Howard University. He later taught at the University of Michigan.
Professor Cohen formerly served as chair of the department of political science, director of the Center for the Study of Race, Politics and Culture, and deputy provost for graduate education at the University of Chicago. Earlier in her career, Dr. Cohen was the first African American woman to receive tenure in the Division of Social Science at Yale University.
Professor Cohen is the author of Democracy Remixed: Black Youth and the Future of American Politics (Oxford University Press, 2010) and The Boundaries of Blackness: AIDS and the Breakdown of Black Politics (University of Chicago Press, 1999).
Professor Cohen earned a bachelor’s degree from Miami University in Oxford, Ohio. She holds a Ph.D. from the University of Michigan.