Alexander Szalay is the Alumni Centennial Professor of Astronomy at the Johns Hopkins University. He is also a professor in the Department of Computer Science. A cosmologist, he works on the statistical measures of the spatial distribution of galaxies and galaxy formation. He was born and educated in Hungary, and he spent postdoctoral periods at UC Berkeley and the University of Chicago before accepting a faculty position at Johns Hopkins.
Szalay was elected to the Hungarian Academy of Sciences as a corresponding member in 1990. He is the architect for the Science Archive of the Sloan Digital Sky Survey and project director of the NSF-funded National Virtual Observatory. He has written more than 340 papers that have appeared in various scientific journals, covering areas such as theoretical cosmology, observational astronomy, spatial statistics, and computer science. In 2003 he was elected as a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. He received an Alexander von Humboldt Prize in Physical Sciences in 2004 and a Microsoft Award for Technical Computing in 2008.