Colin Adams is the Thomas T. Read Professor of Mathematics at Williams College. He received his Ph.D. from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 1983. He is particularly interested in the mathematical theory of knots, their applications and their connections with hyperbolic geometry. He is the author of “The Knot Book”, an elementary introduction to the mathematical theory of knots, “Why Knot?”, a mathematical comic book with attached toy and “Riot at the Calc Exam and Other Mathematically Bent Stories”, a compendium of humorous math stories. He is the co-author of the humorous supplements “How to Ace Calculus: The Streetwise Guide” and “How to Ace the Rest of Calculus: the Streetwise Guide” as well as the textbook “Introduction to Topology: Pure and Applied”. He also appears with Thomas Garrity in “The Great Pi/e Debate”, “The United States of Mathematics Presidential Debate” and “The Derivative vs. the Integral: The Final Smackdown”, DVD’s of humorous debates on mathematical topics that are available from the Mathematical Association of America. His books “The Math Museum: A Survival Story” which is a math novel and “The Tiling Book: An Introduction to the Mathematical Theory of Tilings” appeared in summer, 2022.
Adams has written a variety of research articles on knot theory and hyperbolic 3-manifolds and held various grants to support his research. He is a recipient of the Haimo National Distinguished Teaching Award from the Mathematical Association of America(MAA) in 1998, an MAA Polya Lecturer for 1998-2000, a Sigma Xi Distinguished Lecturer for 2000-2002, and the recipient of the Robert Foster Cherry Teaching Award in 2003. He became a fellow of the American Mathematical Society in its inaugural class of 2013. He is the humor columnist for the Mathematical Intelligencer.
Adams is also a founding board member of the Association for Mathematical Research. This organization supports mathematical research through a variety of initiatives. If you are interested in becoming a member, visit https://amathr.org/