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Leader of Cambridge’s prestigious Academy of Arts and Sciences inflated resume, falsely claiming doctorate

The American Academy of Arts and Sciences’ Leslie Cohen Berlowitz.
The American Academy of Arts and Sciences’ Leslie Cohen Berlowitz.Kurt Hegre for The Boston Globe

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CAMBRIDGE — Every fall, Leslie Cohen Berlowitz, president of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, oversees the induction of hundreds of the brightest scholars, artists, and leaders into the prestigious organization, one of America’s oldest and most respected honorary societies, whose membership includes Nobel laureates and Pulitzer Prize winners.

But records show that Berlowitz, who has led the academy for 17 years, has exaggerated her own academic achievement as part of efforts to win hundreds of thousands of dollars in government funding.

In at least two applications for federal grants over the past decade, Berlowitz said she received a doctorate in English from New York University in 1969, a degree NYU said she never earned.

The academy has also described her as a doctor.

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