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Othmer Gold Medal To George Whitesides

Recipients are honored for contributions of major significance to chemistry

February 22, 2010 | A version of this story appeared in Volume 88, Issue 8

George M. Whitesides, Woodford L. & Ann A. Flowers University Professor at Harvard University, is the recipient of the 2010 Othmer Gold Medal. The award will be presented by the Chemical Heritage Foundation during Heritage Day 2010, on April 7–8 in Philadelphia.

The Othmer Gold Medal honors outstanding individuals who have made multifaceted contributions to our chemical and scientific heritage through outstanding activity in areas such as innovation, entrepreneurship, research, education, public understanding, legislation, or philanthropy.

Whitesides is best known for his pioneering research in molecular self-assembly and for his invention of rapid techniques for the inexpensive fabrication of ultrasmall devices for practical use. He received a bachelor’s degree from Harvard in 1960 and a doctorate from California Institute of Technology in 1964, under the direction of John D. Roberts. He was a member of Massachusetts Institute of Technology faculty before joining Harvard in 1982.

Whitesides has helped found more than 12 companies and holds more than 50 patents. His past honors include the ACS Award in Pure Chemistry, ACS’s Arthur C. Cope Award, the National Medal of Science, the Kyoto Prize for Advanced Technology, and the ACS Priestley Medal.


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