Viviana Gradinaru

2020 Vilcek Prize for Creative Promise in Biomedical Science

Learn more about Viviana

Yaa Gyasi

2020 Vilcek Prize for Creative Promise in Literature

Learn more about Yaa


The Vilcek Foundation raises awareness of immigrant contributions in America and fosters appreciation of the arts and sciences.

We honor foreign-born artists, scientists, and advocates of immigrant rights living and working in the United States for their outstanding contributions to society.


Vilcek Foundation Prizes

Awarded annually, the Vilcek Foundation Prizes honor immigrants for extraordinary contributions in the arts and sciences.



2020 Vilcek Foundation Prizewinners

Nine prizes totaling $600,000 are being awarded to immigrant scientists, writers, and advocates of immigrant rights including Harvard’s Xiaowei Zhuang, author Edwidge Danticat, and the Honorable Robert A. Katzmann.



Still Life with Dial

1922 Stuart Davis

Mont Sainte-Victoire

c. 1927 Marsden Hartley

Black Package

1965 Christo


1944 Ralston Crawford


2007-2010 Neri Oxman

Women and Trees

1911 Max Weber


The Vilcek Foundation and The Arnold P. Gold Foundation are pleased to announce Dr. Vivek Murthy, 19th Surgeon General of the United States, as the recipient of the 2020 Vilcek-Gold Award for Humanism in Healthcare.
President Trump’s intent to suspend immigration runs contrary to the long-established tenet that America is a land of immigrants and is inimical to the overwhelming evidence that immigrants are an asset for this country.
Join the coloring book craze! Download a coloring book of masterworks by Marsden Hartley from the Vilcek Collection.
Born in Mexico City, Valeria Luiselli grew up in South Korea, South Africa, and India, among other countries. The author of ‘Tell Me How It Ends: An Essay in Forty Questions’ and ‘Lost Children Archive’ was awarded a MacArthur Foundation “genius grant” in 2019.
Martin Jonikas was born in Paris to parents of Polish origin. He grew up enamored with machines and flight. While pursuing an undergraduate degree in aerospace engineering from MIT, a required course in molecular biology awakened in him a true passion for the mechanics of living organisms.
Jenny Xie is a poet and lecturer. Her award-winning poetry probes identity, perception, and the boundaries of selfhood.
Viviana Gradinaru credits her upbringing in Communist Romania with fostering ingenuity in problem-solving, and a passion for exploring hard science.
Yaa Gyasi’s debut novel, Homegoing, showcased the Ghanaian-born author’s talent for its emotional portrayal of the impacts of intergenerational trauma on families in the African and African American diaspora.
Kivanç Birsoy’s research at The Rockefeller University focuses on cancer cell metabolism and its therapeutic applications.