College of Science faculty and staff recognized at 2023 Galileo Circle Awards

April 28, 2023
GC Awards

The Galileo Circle is a community of engaged individuals whose support is vital to the continued excellence of the College of Science at the University of Arizona.

The College of Science recently recognized its 2023 Galileo Circle Awards recipients. These awards recognize some of the college's most exceptional faculty and staff and are one of the highest honors the college can bestow. The Galileo Circle Awards are made possible by the generosity of our Galileo Circle members. 

At the annual Galileo Circle Awards Dinner on Thursday, April 27, 2023, College of Science Dean Carmala Garzione and members of the CoS administration recognized the 2023 awardees and the Galileo Circle members who greatly support their efforts. Here are the award recipients:

Galileo Circle Fellows

Fellows are the College's most distinguished faculty. They have a deep understanding of a broad range of science, a willingness to think in a truly interdisciplinary way, and an ability to inspire colleagues and students alive.

Dr. Shufang Su, Professor, Department of Physics

Dr. Shufang Su earned her bachelor’s degree in physics at the University of Science and Technology of China and her Ph.D. from the Massachusetts Institution of Technology. She was the John A. McCone Postdoc Fellow at the California Institute of Technology and joined the University of Arizona (UArizona) faculty in 2003. Her primary research interests are in theoretical particle physics, focusing on important connections between theory and experiments as well as links between particle physics, astrophysics, and cosmology. She was elected as the American Physics Society (APS) Fellow in 2014 for her fundamental contributions to the phenomenology of Higgs bosons, dark matter, supersymmetry, and other physics beyond the Standard Model, which have stimulated and guided experimental search programs. Shufang served as Chair of the APS Four Corners Section and Chair of APS Committee on Scientific Publications. She is the faculty advisor for Women in Physics Club at UArizona, mentor for UArizona “Steps in the Scholar Journey Program,” as well as mentor for the UArizona Mentor Institute of the Faculty Development Communities for Promotion program.

Galileo Circle Curie Award

The Curie Award was created for rising stars among junior tenure-track faculty in the College of Science. Their innovative work advances science and adds diversity within the scientific community.

Dr. Thomas Gianetti, Assistant Professor, Department of Chemistry & Biochemistry

Born in Marseille, south of France, Dr. Gianetti received his bachelor’s and master’s education at CPE Lyon in 2009. In 2014, he received his doctoral degree from University of California, Berkeley, followed by a three-year post-doctoral position at ETH Zürich. His research has largely focused on discovering ways to efficiently store electricity, and in 2020, he co-founded the startup company CarbeniumTec that strives to develop a metal-free battery for long-term energy storage. In his time as an Assistant Professor at UArizona, Thomas has published research articles in major outlets, filed invention disclosures and patent applications with TechLaunch Arizona. As an educator, Thomas is part of the UArizona Vertically Integrated Projects (VIP) and KEYS Research Internship Programs, and he has developed an interdisciplinary class with the College of Law that brings together students from Science and Law to study policy issues related to climate change, pollution, renewable energy, and more.

Dr. Erika Hamden, Associate Professor, Department of Astronomy and Steward Observatory

Dr. Hamden received her bachelor’s degree in astrophysics at Harvard University, then pursued her doctoral studies at Columbia. For her postdoctoral research, she joined California Institute of Technology to develop the FIREball-2 telescope. She specializes in building telescopes that go into space and the stratosphere and develops technology to make telescopes better. The FIREball-2 telescope is designed to observe huge clouds of hydrogen gas that are thought to flow into and out of galaxies. Erika is a leader in the field of space astrophysics and has developed programs to teach early career scientists how to develop their own space missions. She is the deputy principal investigator of Aspera, a NASA orbiting telescope in development. She has won numerous awards from NASA, including a Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers, the highest honor the US Government can bestow on a young scientist. She is a former chef, a TED Fellow, an AAAS If/then Ambassador, an aspiring astronaut, and is working on her pilot’s license.

Dr. Megha Padi, Assistant Professor, Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology; Co-Director of the Biostatistics and Bioinformatics Shared Resource at the Arizona Cancer Center

Dr. Megha Padi is an Assistant Professor in the department of Molecular and Cellular Biology, and she serves as a Co-Director of the Biostatistics and Bioinformatics Shared Resource at the Arizona Cancer Center. She completed her bachelor’s degrees in physics and biology at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and pursued her Ph.D. in high-energy physics at Harvard University. Motivated by the genomics revolution, Megha switched her focus to modeling Big Data in biology during her postdoctoral training at the Harvard School of Public Health. In her lab at UArizona, she integrates genomics, network theory, and cell culture experiments to understand how cellular networks are disrupted in disease. She predicts how cells will respond to therapeutic interventions and validates her hypotheses in the lab. By incorporating insights from molecule biology, she is developing smarter algorithms for identifying drivers of disease. Megha applies these tools to tackle challenging health issues like early-onset colorectal cancer and the evolution of drug resistance.

Galileo Circle Copernicus Award

The Copernicus Award recognizes the extraordinary accomplishments of College of Science non-tenure-eligible faculty or staff. The efforts of these individuals significantly advance the mission of their department and the knowledge base of their discipline.

Mr. Mark Buglewicz, Associate Director of Steward Observatory and Head of Business for the Department of Astronomy.

For the last 20 years, Mark has led Steward Observatory’s business activity that includes the management of contracts and grants resulting in over 1.2 billion dollars in research expenditures. His strong oversight of the financial operations of Astronomy and Steward Observatory has contributed to UArizona being number one in the National Science Foundation Higher Education Research and Development Rankings for 33 years. Mark’s remarkable leadership empowers highly innovative and entrepreneurial groups of researchers, academic faculty, and professionals to be highly successful in their education, research, and outreach missions. Mark has developed close relationships with local and national industrial partners and has mentored other managers. He has brought creative solutions and developed teams to respond to business, financial, human resource, safety, facility, and organizational challenges. This work directly enables the successful, safe, and cost-effective operation of the department, projects, and facilities, including telescopes operated with local and international sponsors and partners.

Dr. Amy Graham, Associate Professor, Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry

Dr. Graham attended the College of Wooster from 1996-2000 then came to UArizona to earn her Ph.D. in Analytical Chemistry. Amy has been engaged in innovative teaching for over a decade and has a passion for using active learning strategies and inclusive teaching practices in a collaborative learning environment. She has been involved in facilitating Faculty Learning Communities, fostering an enthusiasm for enhancing teaching practices. Amy has expertise in training Learning Assistants and works as a Graduate College Faculty Fellow, creating resources for supporting and training Graduate Teaching Assistants across campus. She recently created the podcast “PEP Talks: Productive Educational Practices,” which offers conversations celebrating instructors across campus, along with their journeys and their methods. Amy was awarded the College of Science Distinguished Achievement in Science Education Award in 2017, and the AAU STEM Undergraduate STEM Education Teaching Excellence Award in 2015.

Galileo Circle Postdoc Award

The Postdoc Award was created for the substantial and invaluable contributions postdocs make to the research, mentoring, and outreach missions of both the College and University.

Dr. Teodora Stoica, Postdoctoral Fellow, Department of Psychology

Originally from Romina, Dr. Stoica earned a BA in Psychology from East Carolina University, an MS in Neuroscience from University of Hartford, and her Ph.D. in Translational Neuroscience from the University of Louisville. Her research focus is an interdisciplinary approach to understanding the relationship between neuroarchitecture and emotional functioning, specifically pertaining to the aging brain and neurodegenerative diseases. In addition to her research contributions, she is an incredibly active science writer on her blog,, and for Scientific American. As a mentor, she has helped establish Louisville Science Pathways, an award-winning summer research program for at-risk and underrepresented high school students through the University of Louisville. During her appointment as a dual postdoctoral researcher in emotion and memory labs, Teodora created Mentally Minded, an evidence-based Q&A website aimed at answering the public’s pressing mental health questions.


The Galileo Circle is a community of engaged individuals whose support is vital to the continued excellence of the College of Science at the University of Arizona.  As a member, you will be supporting established and budding scientists at the College of Science. Your gifts provide crucial scholarship support to outstanding students and facilitate groundbreaking research by our distinguished faculty. The Galileo Circle creates a meaningful connection between our patrons and our scientists. If you would like to learn more about the Galileo Circle and join as a member, please click here.