Sarah Ballinger

Head of Program Management, Media Lab
School of Architecture + Planning
Award presented by 
Glen Shor, Executive Vice President and Treasurer

Our next Excellence Award recipient in the Innovative Solutions category is Sarah Ballinger. Sarah is the head of program management for the Center for Constructive Communication at the MIT Media Lab. Her job is to increase the impact of the Center’s core mission, which is to design human-machine systems that improve communication across great divides—and increase the voices of underheard communities.

As one coworker wrote, "Sarah routinely makes the impossible possible through ingenuity, planning, coordination, and dogged determination.

With her innovative ideas, we reshaped our model as an organization. She helped to grow our lab into a center, where we are able to work on a wider breadth of projects and form new collaborations."

Over the last year, Sarah coordinated people across the Institute and beyond to share critical, science-based public health guidance about the pandemic. The COVID-19 social media campaign is one example. This collaboration included diverse partners such as the MIT Media Lab, the former assistant U.S. Surgeon General, and the Creative Artists talent agency.

Sarah, we are excited to celebrate your many outstanding accomplishments - congratulations!