Aki Ishida, Bill de Blasio, and Other Newsmakers

Asi Ikida
Aki Ishida (Tetsunori Ishida)
Design in Bloom

Aki Ishida ’98GSAPP won one of this year’s twelve Architectural Lighting magazine’s design awards for Lantern Field, an interactive installation that she created with a team from Virginia Tech, where she is an assistant professor. The piece was displayed during the National Cherry Blossom Festival, in Washington, DC, and used paper lanterns, color-changing LEDs, and sound for a multisensory experience.

Masthead Toppers

Two Columbians are now running major women’s magazines. In one of her first moves as Condé Nast’s creative director, Anna Wintour named Eva Chen ’05JRN editor in chief of the shopping and fashion magazine Lucky. Chen spent seven years as beauty director of Teen Vogue and also had a regular column in Vogue China.

Vanessa K. Bush ’97JRN became editor in chief of Essence, a leading lifestyle magazine for African-American women. Bush began her journalism career with Time, Inc., and moved to Essence in 2000 after it was acquired by Time. She hopes to focus on issues such as the representation of black women in the media, gun violence, and racial profiling.

Vanessa K. Bush
Vanessa K. Bush (Miller Mobley)
Gracie Mansion-Bound?

Bill de Blasio ’87 SIPA won the Democratic nomination for New York City mayor on September 10, beating out initial frontrunners Christine Quinn and Bill Thompson. De Blasio has been the New York City public advocate since 2010. He previously served on the New York City Council, representing several neighborhoods in Brooklyn. De Blasio will face Republican Joe Lhota in the general election on November 5.

Screen Savers

The Netflix series House of Cards, created and produced by Beau Willimon ’99CC, ’03SOA, received nine Primetime Emmy Award nominations, including for best drama series. The program, which stars Kevin Spacey and Robin Wright, was Netflix’s first original series, and was released as an entire season on February 1, 2013.

Mother of George, a film co-produced by Carly Hugo ’06CC, shared the best-cinematography award at this year’s Sundance Film Festival. The film tells the story of a Nigerian-American couple in Brooklyn trying to conceive a child. It premiered in New York this fall.

Real-Time Profs

MIT Technology Review included Christine Fleming, an assistant professor of electrical engineering at Columbia, on its annual list of “35 Innovators Under 35” for 2013. Fleming, who works in biotechnology, is currently developing optical-imaging technology for cardiologists that will give them access to high-resolution real-time films of the heart during cardiac procedures.

Computer-science professor Henning Schulzrinne was inducted into the Internet Hall of Fame for his work with Voice over Internet Protocol, which serves as the backbone for communication programs like Skype and Google Hangouts. Schulzrinne has also served since 2011 as the chief technology officer for the US Federal Communications Commission.

An Ethical Fellow

Former Columbia president George Rupp was appointed a senior fellow at the Carnegie Council for Ethics in International Affairs. After his tenure at Columbia, from 1993 to 2002, Rupp served as president and CEO of the International Rescue Committee, where he oversaw relief and development operations in more than forty countries, and refugee resettlement and assistance in twenty-two US cities. At the Carnegie Council, Rupp plans to write a book on ethics and globalization. He continues to teach at Columbia as an adjunct professor of religion, public health, and international affairs.