UCSF Medal to be awarded to four recipients at April 27 event

By Corinna Kaarlela

UCSF will honor four individuals with its highest honor - the UCSF Medal - at a special event on Thursday, April 27.

The medal is the University’s most prestigious award, given annually to individuals who have made outstanding personal contributions in areas associated with UCSF’s health science mission, goal and values. Initiated in 1975, the award replaces the granting of honorary degrees.

UCSF Chancellor J. Michael Bishop, MD, will present the medals at a Founders Day banquet at the-Ritz Carlton Hotel in San Francisco. He also will present the University’s top research and teaching awards to UCSF faculty.

The 2006 medal recipients are:

* Jane Brody, personal health columnist for the New York Times.
* Andrew S. Grove, PhD, senior advisor of Intel Corporation and president of The Grove Foundation.
* Rudi Schmid, MD, PhD, professor emeritus and former dean of the UCSF School of Medicine.
* Maxine F. Singer, PhD, president emerita of Carnegie Institution of Washington.

JANE BRODY—Brody has been educating millions of people on health and nutrition topics for over 30 years through her newspaper columns, books, magazine articles and frequent lectures. Because of her large and loyal following, Time Magazine once hailed her as the “high priestess of health.” Among her 10 books is “Jane Brody’s Good Food Book,” which serves as an invaluable practical guide in many households, both for its recipes and comprehensive information on nutrition. Brody was a general assignment reporter for The Minneapolis Tribune for two years, and then joined the Times as a specialist in medicine and biology reporting. In 1976 she was selected by the Times to be the “personal health” columnist. She has received numerous awards for excellence in journalism.

ANDREW GROVE—Recognized as an engineering visionary and a humanitarian, Grove was one of the founders of Intel Corporation in 1968. He holds several patents on semiconductor devices and technology. Active in various community and nonprofit organizations, he is an overseer for the International Rescue Committee and is on the board of the Prostate Cancer Foundation. He served as national chair of the Campaign for UCSF from 1998-2005 and currently serves on the executive committee for UCSF’s Patient Advocate Program. In 2002, he contributed a $5 million matching grant to launch a major new developmental and stem cell biology program at UCSF. He has received numerous honors, including being named “most influential business person in the last 25 years” by Wharton School of Business and Nightly Business Report in 2004.

RUDI SCHMID - Schmid is one a few academicians who transformed UCSF from a good health sciences campus to the one of the world’s great biomedical institutions. Renowned for his pioneering work on liver disease, he was appointed professor and director of the Gastroenterology Unit at UCSF in 1966. Under his leadership, it became one of the country’s leading research, educational and clinical gastroenterology and hepatology units. As dean of the UCSF School of Medicine from 1983-89, he fostered the continued growth of both basic and clinical sciences. He continues to be active at UCSF through a program he founded to increase the international impact of the University by bringing trainees from China to UCSF. His honors include membership in the National Academy of Sciences and the Institute of Medicine. He is a past president of the American Association for the Study of Liver Disease.

MAXINE SINGER - For nearly 50 years, Singer has been a distinguished medical researcher and writer, known also for her impact on science public policy.  Her most recent research has involved studies of repeated DNA sequences called LINES that may have broad significance for understanding genetic diseases. She began her career at the National Institutes of Health and later served as chief of the laboratory of biochemistry at the National Cancer Institute. In 1988 she was appointed president of the Carnegie Institution of Washington. While there, she initiated an innovative program to teach science to elementary school students, as well as a summer science education academy for teachers. She is a recipient of the Distinguished Presidential Rank Award (1988) and the National Medal of Science (1992). 

The banquet also will honor recipients of the foremost awards bestowed each year by the UCSF Academic Senate for distinguished research and teaching. 

This year’s honorees are:

* David Julius, PhD—faculty research lecturer award in honor of outstanding scientific achievement. Professor and vice chair of the Department of Cellular and Molecular Pharmacology in the School of Medicine, Julius’ research focuses on the molecular basis of somatosensation, the process by which we experience touch and temperature.

* R. Curtis Morris, Jr., MD, and Anthony Sebastian, MD—co-recipients of the distinguished clinical research lecturer award. They are being honored for their shared preeminence in the field of patient-oriented research related to hypertension, renal disease, vitamin D and mineral metabolism, nutrition and the physiology underlying electrolyte and acid-base balance.  Morris is professor of pediatrics and radiology, and Sebastian is professor emeritus of medicine, both in the School of Medicine.

* Marieke Kruidering-Hall, PhD, and Michael McMaster PhD—distinction in teaching awards. Kruidering-Hall is assistant professor in the Department of Cellular and Molecular Pharmacology, School of Medicine. McMaster is assistant professor in the Department of Cell and Tissue Biology, School of Dentistry.

UCSF is a leading university that consistently defines health care worldwide by conducting advanced biomedical research, educating graduate students in the life sciences, and providing complex patient care.