Marla Sokolowski

Marla Sokolowski receives Royal Society of Canada’s Flavelle Medal

Marla Sokolowski, a University Professor in the Faculty of Arts & Science’s department of ecology and evolutionary biology, has won the distinguished Flavelle Medal from the Royal Society of Canada for her contributions to biological science.

“I am deeply honoured to be part of the group of exemplary scientists who have won this medal since its inception in 1924,” says Sokolowski, who is only the second woman to win the medal. “I feel grateful for my superb trainees and the innovative research that they have accomplished over the years.”

A pioneer in behaviour genetics, a branch of genetics that encompasses the genetic and molecular basis of individual differences in behaviour, Sokolowski discovered the foraging gene in fruit flies. Her research has ramifications far beyond the lab, informing early childhood development policy – especially for children raised in challenging environments.

“The University of Toronto congratulates Marla Sokolowski on this significant honour,” says University Professor Ted Sargent, vice-president, research and innovation, and strategic initiatives. “This award is an important recognition of the impact of University Professor Sokolowski’s research on the interaction between genes and the environment, and the many ways experience can affect genetic tendencies.”

The award will be presented to Sokolowski on Nov. 27 as part of the Royal Society’s week-long Celebration of Excellence and Engagement.

Read the Faculty of Arts & Science story