News Release

Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists taps Sarah Chayes

First Ruth Adams Award recipient

Grant and Award Announcement

Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists

The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists has named writer Sarah Chayes as the first recipient of its Ruth Salzman Adams Award.

Chayes, a former correspondent in the Middle East, North Africa, and the Balkans for National Public Radio, moved to Afghanistan in 2002, where she now runs an agri-business cooperative. She has just published The Punishment of Virtue, Inside Afghanistan After the Taliban, a highly acclaimed book about the impact of U.S. actions in a society torn apart by violent conflict.

The Bulletin's Ruth Adams Award identifies emerging writers, filmmakers and video producers who have demonstrated the capacity to translate complex ideas and issues of peace and security into everyday language and images. The annual award provides $7,000 to $10,000 to one person for a project on a significant issue. Ruth Salzman Adams (1923-2005) served twice as the editor of the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists magazine. She was widely respected for shaping several generations of writers and researchers, according to Executive Director Kennette Benedict, who worked with Adams as a former official at the MacArthur Foundation.

"Sarah Chayes is exactly the type of writer Ruth Adams sought out and promoted," said Benedict. "Ruth had no patience for canned explanations or obfuscation. She had a sharp instinct for tracking emerging global issues, and she excelled at finding talent--people who could produce solid stories that mattered."


The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists was founded in 1945 by scientists who worked on the Manhattan Project at the University of Chicago and were deeply concerned about the potential future use of nuclear weapons. The magazine is published six times per year. CBS's "60 Minutes" has called it "the leading nuclear journal in the United States."

The Bulletin devised the Doomsday Clock in 1947 to signify the level of global threat posed by nuclear weapons. The Doomsday Clock has been moved 17 times, most recently on February 27, 2002. It currently stands at seven minutes to midnight.

Bulletin writers and supporters now address additional threats including climate change and emerging technologies through the magazine and website, and at conferences.

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