Wendell Weeks and Gigliola Staffilani Join IAS Board

Press Contact

Lee Sandberg

The Institute for Advanced Study has appointed Wendell Weeks (Chairman and CEO, Corning Incorporated) and Gigliola Staffilani (Abby Rockefeller Mauze Professor, MIT) to its Board of Trustees. The appointments were unanimously adopted by the Board on May 7, 2022.

As head of Corning, Weeks brings invaluable experience to the IAS Board. He possesses the insight and acumen needed to bridge the worlds of theoretical and applied science. Under Weeks’s leadership, Corning combines its expertise in glass science, ceramic science, and optical physics with its proprietary manufacturing and engineering platforms to develop products that transform industries and enhance lives. Additionally, Weeks fosters a culture of innovation at Corning, building a stronger, more agile company, and he spearheads education initiatives in the communities in which Corning operates.

Tracing an astonishing path, from a farm in Italy’s Abruzzo region to a full professorship in pure mathematics, Staffilani demonstrates unrivaled tenacity in her pursuit of fundamental knowledge. As an IAS Member (1995–96, 2003–04), she expanded upon the work of Jean Bourgain, solving a problem concerning the growth of solutions to dispersive waves in Sobolev spaces. Her continued leadership within the field and outreach efforts have helped numerous students find their calling in mathematics.

These new Trustees embody an impressive range of knowledge—from the development of hardware that powers society to the abstract realm of pure mathematics. The Board will benefit greatly from their perspectives as it continues to advance the Institute mission.

Wendell Weeks is the Chairman and CEO of Corning Incorporated, a global innovation leader specializing in materials science and advanced manufacturing. Weeks began his career with Corning in 1983 in the company’s finance group. In his 39 years with Corning, he has held a variety of financial, business development, commercial, and general management roles, including strategic positions in the company’s television, specialty glass, and optical communications businesses. During his tenure as CEO, he has played an instrumental role in numerous innovations, including the development of Corning® Gorilla® Glass and Corning Valor® Glass, and has earned 33 U.S. patents.

Weeks is a graduate of Lehigh University and holds a Master of Business Administration from Harvard University, where he was a Baker Scholar. He serves on the board of directors at Amazon.com, Inc., is a member of the Liveris Academy Honorary Board, and is on the board of trustees for the Corning Museum of Glass.

Corning’s founders, the Houghton family, have been involved with IAS since its establishment: Alanson B. Houghton was an IAS Trustee (1930–41) and President of Corning Glass Works (1910–18); Amory Houghton, Sr. was a Trustee (1967–71) and President & Chairman of Corning Glass Works (1930–61); and James Houghton was a Trustee (1971–83) and Chairman of Corning Incorporated (1981­–96, 2002–05). He also created the Corning Glass Works Foundation Fellowship at IAS, which annually supports a Member in the School of Natural Sciences.

Gigliola Staffilani, serving as an IAS Academic Trustee, is Abby Rockefeller Mauze Professor in the Department of Mathematics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). Her research centers around partial differential equations and harmonic analysis.

She held faculty positions at Stanford, Princeton, and Brown before joining the MIT mathematics faculty in 2002. In addition to various teaching awards, she was elected as a fellow of the American Mathematical Society (2013), a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences (2014), and a member of the National Academy of Sciences (2021). In 2017, She received a Guggenheim fellowship and a Simons Fellowship in Mathematics.

She received the B.S. equivalent from the University of Bologna in 1989, and her M.S. and Ph.D. from the University of Chicago in 1991 and 1995, respectively.

About the Institute
The Institute for Advanced Study has served the world as one of the leading independent centers for theoretical research and intellectual inquiry since its establishment in 1930, advancing the frontiers of knowledge across the sciences and humanities. From the work of founding IAS faculty such as Albert Einstein and John von Neumann to that of the foremost thinkers of the present, the IAS is dedicated to enabling curiosity-driven exploration and fundamental discovery.

Each year, the Institute welcomes more than 200 of the world’s most promising post-doctoral researchers and scholars who are selected and mentored by a permanent Faculty, each of whom are preeminent leaders in their fields. Among present and past Faculty and Members there have been 35 Nobel Laureates, 44 of the 62 Fields Medalists, and 22 of the 25 Abel Prize Laureates, as well as many MacArthur Fellows and Wolf Prize winners.