by Kelcey Buck
Lincoln, Neb. —Mary Ann Johnson, J.S. Tinstman Professor and chair of the Department of Nutrition and Health Sciences, was one of 16 individuals inducted into the American Society for Nutrition’s Class of 2023 Fellows. It is the highest honor bestowed by ASN, recognizing individuals for significant discoveries and distinguished careers in the field of nutrition.
“This award prompts me to reminisce about the many students, staff, faculty and collaborators who shared research and teaching journeys with me,” Johnson said. “I am very grateful to my parents who from a young age said, ‘You are going to college someday.’ And to my family, Terry, Ann and John Centner, who always support me and are taking their own journeys in research and teaching in business and higher education.”
Johnson has been active in ASN since 1983, including roles as president (2017-18), past-president (2018-19), national spokesperson inaugural class (2008), AIN/ASN Mead Johnson Award (1994), and Future Leaders Award from International Life Sciences Institute – Nutrition Foundation (1989). Additionally, Johnson began a two-year term as a member of the ASN Foundation Board of Trustees in 2023.
In her career, Johnson has co-authored more than 200 peer-reviewed publications and book chapters. She has mentored more 40 master’s students and 16 doctoral students who went on to pursue careers in clinical and community settings, as well as careers with CDC, EPA, USDA, and academia.
Now entering her sixth year at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, Johnson mentors faculty and staff at all career stages to reach their goals in research, teaching, Extension and outreach. Prior to arriving at Nebraska, she was a faculty member at the University of Georgia for 35 years where her career focused on aging, nutrition and chronic disease self-management, as well as training students and health professionals in food and nutrition policies to ensure access to affordable, safe and wholesome foods.
Scientists are eligible for consideration to be inducted as a Fellow of the American Society for Nutrition if they have had distinguished careers in the field of nutrition and are at least 65 years of age.
Members of the 2023 class join more than 500 other ASN Fellows who have been recognized since the program began in 1952. Learn more at https://nutrition.org/asn-foundation/fellows/.