Hee Oh of Yale University will be awarded the 2015 AMS Ruth Lyttle Satter Prize at the Joint Mathematics Meetings in January in San Antonio, Texas. Oh is honored for "[her] fundamental contributions to the fields of dynamics on homogeneous spaces, discrete subgroups of Lie groups, and applications to number theory."
In an interview with Yale News, Oh described how it feels to work on and solve a mathematics problem. "It is as though I feel my way through the darkness, find a switch to light up the room, and come to appreciate how perfectly organized and beautiful that room really is. I look around and understand the role of each piece of the problem I stumbled over in my wanderings searching for that switch. Although in the beginning it looks like there is no structure, each mathematical problem has indeed a beautiful structure, not unlike what we appreciate in a great art work."
The Satter Prize citation highlights in particular Oh's recent work, carried out different parts jointly with A. Kontorovich, with N. Shah, with M. Lee and with A. Mohammadi, that connects the classical problem of circle packings with cutting-edge modern questions. "This work brings together in a beautiful way dynamics on homogeneous spaces, the geometry and topology of 3-dimensional manifolds, and various subtle number-theoretic phenomena, for example the distribution of primes," the citation says.
Born in South Korea in 1969, Oh earned her PhD from Yale University in 1997. She held positions at some of the top centers of mathematics, including Princeton University, the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton, and the California Institute of Technology, where she became a full professor in 2006. After seven years as a professor at Brown University, she became the first tenured woman mathematics professor at Yale.
Presented every two years by the American Mathematical Society, the Satter Prize recognizes an outstanding contribution to mathematics research by a woman in the previous six years. The prize will be awarded at the Joint Prize Session at the Joint Mathematics Meetings, Sunday, January 11, 2015 at 4:25 PM, at the Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center in San Antonio, Texas.
Find out more about AMS prizes and awards at http://ams.
Founded in 1888 to further mathematical research and scholarship, today the nearly 30,000 member American Mathematical Society fulfills its mission through programs and services that promote mathematical research and its uses, strengthen mathematical education, and foster awareness and appreciation of mathematics and its connections to other disciplines and to everyday life.