It is with profound sadness that FABBS shares the passing of dear colleagues Dr. Kellina (Kelli) Craig-Henderson, Assistant Director of the Social Behavioral and Economic (SBE) Directorate at the National Science Foundation (NSF), and Jennifer Wickre, Deputy Staff Director for the Republicans on the House Science, Space, and Technology Committee.
FABBS has elected to name the Inclusivity, Diversity, Equity, and Accessibility (IDEA) Award in memory of Kellina Craig-Henderson, who led the Social, Behavioral and Economic Sciences (SBE) Directorate from January to June of 2022, following over 16 years of service to the National Science Foundation (NSF).
A dedicated leader, Dr. Craig-Henderson worked tirelessly to engage underrepresented groups in science. Thanks to her leadership, NSF launched Build and Broaden and the Science of Broadening Participation, two programs aimed at increasing diversity and inclusion in science. Dr. Craig-Henderson was a social psychologist and a prolific writer, covering topics such as discrimination, racial identity, and interracial relations in her published articles and book chapters. The FABBS IDEA award recognizes early to mid-career behavioral scientists who exemplify mentorship, service, and scholarship to advance diversity, equity, and inclusion in science. Naming this award in honor of Dr. Craig-Henderson recognizes her significant contributions to the advancement of these goals. and celebrates the legacy of her life’s contributions.
Dr. Craig-Henderson earned her Ph.D. in psychology and served in several leadership positions within SBE. Prior to officially accepting the role in June of 2022, Dr. Craig-Henderson served as acting assistant director of SBE from January of that year, and before that, as deputy assistant director of SBE and deputy division director of the Social and Economic Sciences Division. Among her many contributions, Dr. Craig-Henderson will be remembered for having established two flagship initiatives to advance SBE disciplines: Build and Broaden and Science of Broadening Participation. These federal programs fund research to examine issues related to gender parity in STEM and minority participation in work settings.
FABBS staff and board had the honor of working closely with Dr. Craig-Henderson, who was always generous with her time and expertise, speaking at the FABBS annual meeting in 2020, brainstorming ways to increase diversity and inclusion in our disciplines, and building support for our disciplines within NSF.
Jennifer Wickre served on the House Science Committee since January 2015, starting as professional staff and working her way up to Deputy Staff Director. Wickre was the exemplar of a public servant. She was deeply knowledgeable, passionate about science, and committed to the process of democracy. The House Science Committee, under the leadership of Rep. Lucas (R-OK), former Chairwoman Eddie Bernice Johnson, and now Ranking Member Lofgren, is one of the few that has worked collaboratively on a bipartisan basis. Wickre was a key staffer on the deliberations and legislative drafts of NSF authorization that culminated in the passage of the CHIPS and Science Act of 2022. On April 19th Chairman Lucas honored Jenn on the House Floor.