Clifford Jolly, an emeritus professor of anthropology at NYU, has received the 2012 Charles R. Darwin Lifetime Achievement Award, which recognizes and honors distinguished senior members of the American Association of Physical Anthropologists (AAPA), the leading national professional organization of biological anthropologists.
Recipients of the award, which was established in 1992, have demonstrated a lifetime of contributions and commitment to physical anthropology through their scholarship, training, and service to the AAPA. Jolly was presented with the award, an engraved bronze statue of Charles Darwin, at AAPA’s annual meeting in Portland, Oregon in April.
Jolly received his Ph.D. in anthropology from the University of London in 1967, where he conducted pioneering research on the evolution and genetics of baboons. He has written or edited six books and published over 100 articles in leading science journals on topics that include: primate behavior, comparative anatomy and physiology, molecular primatology, paleontology, and evolutionary theory. His paper, “Seed eaters: A new model of hominid differentiation based on a baboon analogy,” became a landmark contribution to the field after its publication in 1970. His other major contribution has been his long-term studies of the population genetics of a baboon hybrid zone in the Awash region of Ethiopia.
Jolly, who has spent more than four decades at NYU, is currently co-directing a multi-disciplinary project, funded by the National Science Foundation, of the biology of the Kinda baboon in Zambia.