Caltech Professor Frances Arnold was among 10 woman recognized Monday at the California Legislative Women's Caucus "Breaking the Glass Ceiling" award ceremony in Sacramento.
The ceremony commemorated the achievements of women who have made a great contribution to California and have inspired women and girls in the state.
Assemblyman Mike Gatto (D-Burbank) nominated the La Cañada resident for her accomplishments in science, medicine and engineering.
Arnold was the only woman to receive the Charles Stark Draper Prize—the engineering profession's highest honor. She is also the only woman to be elected to all three U.S. National Academies of Science, Medicine and Engineering.
In December, President Barack Obama presented her with a National Medal of Technology and Innovation, the highest award granted to scientists in the U.S.
Gatto learned of Arnold’s efforts after reading a newspaper article about her. Immediately, he knew the state should honor her, also.
“I owe so much to the strong women in my life, like my mother, who fought her way through night law school while raising three kids," Gatto said in a media statement. "It is so important that we recognize these woman leaders for their positive effects on society. Dr. Arnold is an inspiration to us all.”