GSAS counts among its graduates Pulitzer Prize winners, Emmy Award winners, best-selling authors, MacArthur Fellows and more. But it doesn't stop there. Brandeis graduates occupy leadership roles in virtually every walk of life. Here are just a few, organized by division:

Creative Arts

  • Peter Child, PhD ’81 (Music), Professor of Music at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology; formerly composer in residence with the New England Philharmonic. 
  • Steven Bradford Culp, MFA ’81 (Theater Arts), film and television actor, known for his roles in Desperate Housewives, JAG, and The West Wing.
  • Loretta Devine, MFA ’76 (Theater Arts), stage, television, and film actress, known for her recurring roles on Boston Public and Grey’s Anatomy, for the latter of which she received a Primetime Emmy Award.
  • Jesse Kellerman, MFA ’03 (Theater Arts), novelist and playwright, Sunstroke (2006), Trouble (2007), The Genius (2008), The Executor (2010), I’ll Catch You (2012); winner of the Princess Grace Award
  • Steven Mackey, PhD ’85 (Music), Professor of Music at Princeton University; winner of a Guggenheim fellowship, two awards from the Kennedy Center, and the Stoeger Award for Chamber Music
  • Theresa Rebeck, MA ’83 (English), MFA ’86 (Theater Arts), PhD ’89 (English), Broadway playwright



  • Ruth Deech, DBE, MA ’66 (Near Eastern and Judaic Studies), principal at St. Anne’s College at the University of Oxford from 1991-2004; the UK’s first independent adjudicator for higher education from 2004-08; BBC governor from 2002-06; Rhodes trustee from 1996-2006; appointed Baroness Deech of Cumnor in the County of Oxfordshire in 2005 by the House of Lords.
  • Mark Halliday, PhD ’83 (English), author of seven volumes of poetry; 1994 poet in residence at The Frost Place; included in several editions of The Best American Poetry series; 2006 Guggenheim Fellow; winner of the 2001 Rome Prize from the American Academy of Arts and Letters
  • Wakako Hironaka, MA ’64 (English and Sociology), served four terms in Japan’s House of Councillors, the upper house of the national Diet, from 1986 until 2010
  • Ha Jin, MA ’89, PhD ’93 (English), National Book Award winning and Pulitzer Prize finalist author of WaitingWar Trash, Nanjing Requiem
  • Deborah Lipstadt, MA ’72, PhD ’76 (Near Eastern and Judaic Studies), Dorot Professor of Modern Jewish History and Holocaust Studies at Emory University; United States Special Envoy for Monitoring and Combating Anti-Semitism
  • Theresa Rebeck, MA ’83 (English), MFA ’86 (Theater Arts), PhD ’89 (English), Broadway playwright
  • Jehuda Reinharz, PhD ’72 (Near Eastern and Judaic Studies), president emeritus, Brandeis University; president, Mandel Foundation
  • Jonathan Sarna, ’75, MA ’75 (Near Eastern and Judaic Studies), Joseph H. and Belle R. Braun Professor of American Jewish History, Brandeis University


Social Sciences

  • Yoni Appelbaum, MA ’10, PhD ’14 (History), Deputy Editor for The Atlantic
  • David Brudnoy, PhD ’71 (History), former broadcaster at WBZ and once top-rated talk radio host in New England
  • Robert L. Gallucci, MA ’68, PhD ’74 (Politics), chief negotiator for the United States during the North Korean nuclear crisis of 1994; former US Ambassador-at-Large; former Dean of the Georgetown School of Foreign Service; former President of the MacArthur Foundation
  • David Kertzer, PhD ’74 (Anthropology), Paul R. Dupee, Jr. University Professor of Social Science, Professor of Anthropology, Professor of Italian Studies and former Provost at Brown University; Pulitzer Prize Winner
  • Scott Lasensky, PhD ’01 (Politics), Senior Policy Advisor on Israel, the Middle East, and Jewish Affairs in the Obama Administration from 2011-2017
  • David Oshinsky, PhD ’71 (History), director of the Division of Medical Humanities at the NYU Grossman School of Medicine; Pulitzer Prize Winner
  • Dimitrij Rupel, PhD ’76 (Sociology), former foreign minister for the Republic of Slovenia
  • Alan Taylor, PhD ’86 (History), Thomas Jefferson Foundation Professor of History at the University of Virginia; winner of the Pulitzer Prize and the Bancroft Prize and National Book Award finalist


  • Larry Abbott, PhD ’77 (Physics), William Bloor Professor of Theoretical Neuroscience at Columbia University; member of the National Academy of Sciences
  • Paul Anastas, MA ’87, PhD ’90 (Chemistry), director of the Center for Green Chemistry and Green Engineering and Teresa and H. John Heinz III Professor in the Practice of Chemistry for the Environment at Yale University
  • Giovanni Bosco, PhD ’98 (Biology), Professor of Molecular and Systems Biology at Dartmouth
  • Sheeri Cabral ’00, MA ’01 (Computer Science), first Oracle ACE Director for MySQL
  • Tony Chang, PhD ’83 (Chemistry), CEO, Tech-Link Silicones
  • Monica Colaiacovo, PhD ’99 (Molecular and Cell Biology), Professor of Genetics at Harvard Medical School
  • Frances Colón, PhD ’04 (Neuroscience), Senior Director for International Climate Policy at American Progress; former Deputy Science and Technology Adviser to the Secretary of State
  • Susan Band Horwitz, PhD ’63 (Biochemistry), Rose C. Falkenstein Professor of Cancer of Research, Emerita, at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine; pioneering researcher of the cancer-fighting drug Taxol
  • Alfredo Kirkwood, PhD ’91 (Neuroscience), professor of neuroscience at the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine
  • Nikhil Krishnaswamy, MA ‘13 (Computational Linguistics), PhD ‘17 (Computer Science), Assistant Professor of Computer Science at Colorado State University 
  • Leslie Lamport, MA ’63, PhD ’72 (Mathematics), Distinguished Scientist at Microsoft and developer of LaTeX; Turing Award winner
  • Liqun Luo, MA ’92, PhD ’93 (Biology), Anne and Bill Swindells Professor of Biology at Stanford University; author of a prominent Neurobiology textbook; Howard Hughes Medical Institute Investigator; member of the National Academy of Sciences
  • James B. Moseley, PhD ’06 (Biology), Professor of Biochemistry and Cell Biology at Dartmouth
  • Jesper Sjöström, PhD ’03 (Neuroscience), Assistant Professor of Medicine and Neurology and Neurosurgery at McGill
  • Ron Sun, PhD ’92 (Computer Science), Professor of Cognitive Science at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, known for work on cognitive modeling 
  • Daniel Tardiff, PhD ’07 (Biology), Scientific Co-Founder and Vice President, Head of Translational Research, Yumanity Therapeutics
  • Paul Townsend, PhD ’76 (Physics), DAMTP Professor of Theoretical Physics at Cambridge University; fellow of the Royal Society
  • Karen Uhlenbeck, MA ’67, PhD ’68 (Mathematics), Professor Emeritus in Mathematics at the University of Texas-Austin; MacArthur Fellow
  • Tim Vogels, PhD ’07 (Neuroscience), Professor at Institute of Science and Technology Austria
  • Alanna Watt, PhD ’03 (Neuroscience), Associate Professor of Biology at McGill University
  • Hongkui Zeng, PhD ’97 (Biology), Executive Vice President, Director of the Allen Institute for Brain Science