Rita Colwell Receives Lifetime Achievement Award From the American Society for Microbiology

Rita Colwell, Distinguished University Professor in the Institute for Advanced Computer Studies at the University of Maryland and professor at the Bloomberg School of Public Health at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, has received the American Society for Microbiology Lifetime Achievement Award.

In the 1960s, Dr. Colwell was the first researcher in the United States to develop a computer program to analyze bacteriological data. She served as the 11th director of the National Science Foundation and as chair of the Board of Governors of the American Academy of Microbiology, president of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, Washington Academy of Sciences, American Society for Microbiology, Sigma Xi National Science Honorary Society, International Union of Microbiological Societies, and American Institute of Biological Sciences.

As a scholar, Dr. Colwell’s interdisciplinary research spans the fields of microbiology, ecology, infectious disease, public health, and computer and satellite technology. Her life-saving contributions in the areas of global infectious diseases, water, and health have earned her numerous prestigious awards including the National Medal of Science presented by President George W. Bush. She has authored more than 20 books, including her most recent A Lab of One’s Own: One Woman’s Personal Journey Through Sexism in Science (Simon & Schuster, 2020).

Dr. Colwell holds a bachelor’s degree in bacteriology and a master’s degree in genetics from Purdue University in West Lafayette, Indiana. She earned a Ph.D. in oceanography from the University of Washington. Over the course of her career, she has received 63 honorary doctorates from higher education institutions around the world.

Filed Under: AwardsSTEM Fields


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