John Stevenage, chief executive of British Mensa, said the organization was proud to welcome Heidi Hankins of Winchester, England, into its ranks after she scored a 159 on an IQ test, putting her just 1 point behind fellow Mensa member Hawking's 160 IQ, The Sun reported Thursday.
Matthew Hankins, 46, the girl's father, said he and his wife knew early on that their daughter was special.
"We always thought Heidi was bright because she was reading early," Hankins said. "I was curious about her IQ and the results were off the scale. I got her the complete set of the Oxford Reading Tree books when she was 2 and she read through the whole set of 30 in about an hour. It's what you would expect a 7-year-old to do. She was making noises and trying to talk literally since she was born and by age 1 her vocabulary was quite good. Now it is really good."