I am delighted to share the news that Bruce Alberts, PhD, a longtime and highly regarded member of the UCSF faculty, has been named by President Barack Obama as one of nine scientists to be awarded the National Medal of Science, the highest U.S. honor for scientific achievement. Bruce will be honored with his fellow recipients at a White House Ceremony later this year.
Currently the Chancellor’s Leadership Chair in Biochemistry and Biophysics for Science and Education, Bruce joined UCSF in 1976. His 50-year career has been one of the most illustrious in modern biology. Renowned for his fundamental discoveries on how DNA is replicated before cells divide, he has been equally lauded as a tireless advocate for science and education.
After a five-year period as chair of UCSF’s Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics, Bruce served two six-year terms, from 1993 to 2005, as president of the National Academy of Sciences (NAS). During his tenure at NAS, he was instrumental in developing the landmark National Science Education standards that have been implemented in school systems nationwide.
He also served as president of the American Society for Cell Biology in 2007 and editor-in-chief of Science magazine from 2008 to 2013.
In 1987, Bruce co-founded the Science & Health Education Partnership (SEP), a 24-year-old collaboration between UCSF and the San Francisco Unified School District to support quality science education for K-12 students. SEP is one of the most successful and longest-running community outreach projects at UCSF, and it is recognized nationally and internationally as a model organization that supports quality science education for K-12 students through partnerships between scientists and teachers.
Bruce epitomizes the spirit, dedication and passion for promoting science for public good for which UCSF stands. Please join me in congratulating him on this great honor.
Sam Hawgood, MBBS
Arthur and Toni Rembe Rock Distinguished Professor