Eleana MacPhail

Administrative Manager, Simons Center for the Social Brain
School of Science
Award presented by 
Maria Zuber


Our next Outstanding Contributor is Eleana MacPhail, the Administrative Manager of the Simons Center for the Social Brain within the School of Science.  But the mission of the Simons Center cuts across all of MIT’s schools.

In a similar way, Eleana’s excellence cuts across all of the Center’s functions.  Her extraordinary commitment, her colleagues say, has contributed to the Center’s reputation in the world--it’s a pivotal leader in the advancement of research on brain disorders.

Eleana played an instrumental role in the creation of the Center and now manages all aspects of its operations, from complex financial management, to wide-ranging communications, to high-profile events. These included the influential Simons Center Colloquium, and the Lunch Series, at which Boston-area researchers would present their latest findings. Eleana also organizes major events to introduce prospective donors—and the wider neuroscience community— to the advances happening at the Center.

Another colleague wrote, “At the heart of her contributions is Eleana’s intelligence, creativity, and dedication. The Simons Center did not exist before Eleana, and many of her tasks had to be initiated from scratch. Eleana continually looks around, imagines what can be done to advance our mission, and goes ahead and does just that—quietly, but with energy and enthusiasm.”

Eleana, your work has had an impact not only on the Simons Center, but also on MIT. Congratulations on your Excellence Award.