KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Dr. Temple Grandin’s impressive list of professional accolades was enhanced even more on April 20, when the American Academy of Arts and Sciences elected the Colorado State Univ. professor of animal science and longtime contributing editor to MEAT+POULTRY, to its membership. The Cambridge, Massachusetts-based academy announced the election of Grandin among 213 new members to its prestigious ranks. Previously, two other CSU faculty members were elected to the American Academy, including Diana Wall, a biologist who was inducted in 2014, and the late Marshall Fixman, the university’s first inductee in 1970.

Dr. Temple Grandin
Dr. Temple Grandin

In a press release, the academy, which was founded in 1780, said this year’s inductees represent the 236th class of new members, which includes “some of the world’s most accomplished scholars, scientists, writers, artists, as well as civic, business and philanthropic leaders.”

Grandin joins an elite club as a member of the academy, with a roster that includes George Washington, Ralph Waldo Emerson and Martin Luther King Jr. This year’s class will be inducted in an Oct. 18, 2016, ceremony in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

Grandin was among the inductees in the category of public affairs, business, and administration, and was identified in the release as a “professor and autism spokesperson.”

“I am both honored and humbled to be included in such a distinguished group,” Grandin said in a statement from CSU. “As I looked down the list of members both past and present, I was awed by the impact of their work and hope that my contributions will have as much influence as theirs.”

Grandin has earned a reputation as the world’s foremost expert in designing animal handling systems and has worked for decades as a consultant for the meat-processing industry in the area of livestock handling. She has authored many books focused on animal handling, animal behavior and autism. Diagnosed with autism as a child, she has inspired and informed thousands of people making presentations about overcoming limitations of autism and how she has become a successful business person and spokeswoman for what can be accomplished. She was also the subject of an Emmy award-winning HBO biopic, “Temple Grandin.”

“It is an honor to welcome this new class of exceptional women and men as part of our distinguished membership,” said Don Randel, chairman of the academy. “Their election affords us an invaluable opportunity to bring their expertise and knowledge to bear on some of the most significant challenges of our day. We look forward to engaging these new members in the work of the academy.”

The list of this year’s inductees is available here: www.amacad.org/members.