The Johns Hopkins Gazette: May 19, 2003
May 19, 2003
VOL. 32, NO. 35


Society of Scholars Inducts New Members

Johns Hopkins Gazette Online Edition

To honor the significant accomplishments of men and women who spent part of their careers at Johns Hopkins, the Society of Scholars was created by the board of trustees in May 1967 on the recommendation of then President Milton S. Eisenhower.

The society--the first of its kind in the nation--inducts former postdoctoral fellows and former junior or visiting faculty at Johns Hopkins who have gained marked distinction in their fields of physical, biological, medical, social or engineering sciences or in the humanities and for whom at least five years have elapsed since their last Johns Hopkins affiliation.

The Committee of the Johns Hopkins Society of Scholars, whose members are equally distributed among the academic divisions, elects the scholars from the candidates nominated by the academic divisions that have programs for postdoctoral fellows. There are currently 445 members in the Johns Hopkins Society of Scholars.

The 15 scholars elected in 2003 will be invested at an induction ceremony hosted by Provost Steven Knapp at 4 p.m. on Wednesday, May 21, at Evergreen House; at that time, the new members in attendance will be presented with a diploma and a medallion on a black and gold ribbon to be worn with their academic robe. The induction will be followed by a dinner hosted by President William R. Brody. The new Society of Scholars will be recognized at Commencement on May 22.

The following listing gives the names of the inductees, their Johns Hopkins affiliation, the name of their nominator and a short description of their accomplishments at the time of their election to the society.

Bjorn Afzelius, Stockholm, Sweden

At Johns Hopkins: Fellow in the Thomas C. Jenkins Department of Biophysics (now Biochemistry and Molecular Biology) in the School of Public Health, 1957 to 1958.

Nominator: Diane E. Griffin, chair of the Department of Molecular Microbiology and Immunology.

Bjorn Afzelius has made seminal contributions to the understanding of the motility of sperm and cilia. A professor emeritus at Stockholm University, he has trained a large number of people in the use of electron microscopy for biomedical research. Afzelius has published 250 scientific papers and has written books on spermatology, cell biology and biomedical electron microscopy.

Appiah Amirtharajah, Atlanta

At Johns Hopkins: Postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Geography and Environmental Engineering, Whiting School of Engineering, 1984 to 1985.

Nominator: Charles R. O'Melia, professor, Department of Geography and Environmental Engineering.

Appiah Amirtharajah is among a small group of the very best environmental engineers and practitioners in the field of potable water treatment and supply. Using innovative physical and chemical technologies, he has improved the health of people throughout the world, across geographical and cultural boundaries. Over the past 25 years, Amirtharajah has been a mentor to his students and a valued colleague for others working to provide safe, reliable and affordable water supplies.

Eric W. Fonkalsrud, Santa Monica, Calif.

At Johns Hopkins: Intern and assistant resident under Alfred Blalock, Department of Surgery, School of Medicine, 1957 to 1959.

Nominator: John L. Cameron, professor, Department of Surgery.

For decades, Eric Fonkalsrud has been one of the outstanding leaders in pediatric surgery. During his 35-year tenure as chief of pediatric surgery at the University of California, Los Angeles, School of Medicine, Fonkalsrud developed an active clinical and research program in the management of inflammatory bowel disease in children and adults. He was among the developers of the ileoanal pouch procedure for patients with ulcerative colitis.

James D. Griffin, Boston

At Johns Hopkins: Internship and residency in internal medicine, Department of Medicine, under chair Vincent McKusick, 1974 to 1976.

Nominator: Martin D. Abeloff, director, the Sidney Kimmel Comprehensive Cancer Center at Johns Hopkins.

Chair of the Department of Medical Oncology at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, James Griffin is internationally recognized for his research in the clinical and biologic aspects of hematologic malignancies, or cancers of the blood cells. He was chosen to lead his department because of his vision and compassion; more than 100,000 patients visit his department's clinics each year. Griffin is a professor at Harvard Medical School.

Arthur P. Grollman, Stony Brook, N.Y.

At Johns Hopkins: Intern and assistant resident, Department of Medicine, School of Medicine, 1959 to 1961.

Nominator: Simeon Margolis, professor, Department of Medicine and Biological Chemistry.

Arthur Grollman is director of the Zickler Laboratory of Chemical Biology at the State University of New York at Stony Brook, where he explores the relationship between the structure of damaged DNA and the enzymes involved in repairing it. Grollman's studies have contributed to our understanding of the aging process and are used in developing cancer-fighting chemotherapeutic drugs. He is a professor of medicine, experimental medicine and pharmacological sciences.

William G. Kaelin Jr., Boston

At Johns Hopkins: Postdoctoral studies in the Division of Medicine/Internal Medicine, School of Medicine, 1983 to 1986.

Nominator: Martin Abeloff, director, the Sidney Kimmel Comprehensive Cancer Center at Johns Hopkins.

A Howard Hughes Medical Institute investigator, William Kaelin works to discover why mutations of tumor-suppressing genes cause cancer. His work provides insight into the genetic factors that make people more likely to develop the disease, and he is developing innovative molecularly targeted cancer therapy. Kaelin is a professor in the Department of Medicine at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and at Brigham and Women's Hospital, Harvard Medical School.

Kenneth A. Krackow, Buffalo, N.Y.

At Johns Hopkins: Postdoctoral work with Robert A. Robinson, Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, School of Medicine, 1971 to 1976.

Nominator: Frank J. Frassica, chair of the Department of Orthopaedic Surgery.

Kenneth Krackow is the clinical director of the Buffalo General Hospital Department of Orthopaedics and well-known in his field as an innovator and teacher. In October 2001, he performed the first computer-assisted total knee replacement in North America, using a surgical navigation system he developed to assist surgeons locate exact points within the body.

Frederick Hamilton Linthicum Jr., Los Angeles

At Johns Hopkins: Postdoctoral fellow, Department of Laryngology and Otology, School of Medicine, 1949 to 1952.

Nominator: Charles W. Cummings, director, Department of Otolaryngology­Head and Neck Surgery.

Frederick Linthicum has helped millions of people affected by hearing loss and balance problems through his dedicated study of pathology in the human temporal bone, which contains the organs responsible for hearing and balance. His roles as teacher and mentor have further amplified his contributions to the field of otology. Linthicum is director of the Temporal Bone Histopathology Laboratory at the House Ear Institute in Los Angeles, where he has been an affiliate since 1957. He will not be attending the ceremony.

Kevin G. Rice, Iowa City, Iowa

At Johns Hopkins: Postdoctoral fellow, Department of Biology, Krieger School of Arts and Sciences, 1987 to 1991.

Nominator: Yuan C. Lee, professor, Department of Biology.

As a National Institutes of Health postdoctoral fellow, Kevin Rice spent three years at Johns Hopkins studying the relationships between carbohydrates and carbohydrate-binding proteins. His work has become a highly respected classic in the field. Now a professor and division head of medicinal and natural products chemistry at the College of Pharmacy at the University of Iowa (his alma mater), Rice has trained many Ph.D.'s and postdoctoral fellows. In 2001, he earned the American Chemical Society's Horace S. Isbell Award, a coveted honor bestowed only upon scientists under 40 years old, for his development and application of targeted gene delivery systems based on carbohydrate-recognition in biological systems.

Ira Michael Rutkow, Freehold, N.J.

At Johns Hopkins: Postdoctoral fellow, Department of Health Services Administration (now Health Policy and Management), School of Public Health, 1977 to 1978 and 1980 to 1981.

Nominator: Barbara Starfield, University Distinguished Services Professor, Department of Health Policy and Management.

Ira Rutkow is one of the world's eminent historians of surgery. His book American Surgery: An Illustrated History was named a Notable Book of the Year in 1994 by The New York Times Book Review. He is an internationally known teacher and founder of the Hernia Center, the nation's only private hernia hospital, where he uses techniques that reduce patient discomfort and speed recovery. Surgeons from all over the world visit the center to learn from Rutkow.

Terrence J. Sejnowski, La Jolla, Calif.

At Johns Hopkins: Postdoctoral fellow, Department of Biophysics, Krieger School of Arts and Sciences, 1982 to 1990.

Nominator: Richard A. Cone, professor, Department of Biophysics.

A world leader in the field of computational neuroscience, Sejnowski did research at Johns Hopkins that laid the foundation for the field of neural network analysis. In 1982, he became an assistant professor of biophysics at Johns Hopkins, where he received the Presidential Young Investigator Award. Today, Sejnowski is director of the Institute for Neural Computation at the University of California, San Diego. He is also head of the Computational Neurobiology Laboratory at the Salk Institute.

Robert Skidelsky, Lord Skidelsky of Tilton, East Sussex, England

At Johns Hopkins: Nitze School of Advanced International Studies, Washington, D.C., and Bologna Center, 1970 and 1972 to 1976.

Nominator: David P. Calleo, director, European Studies Department.

Robert Skidelsky is an economist and historian and author of the definitive biography of economist John Maynard Keynes. A professor of economics at the University of Warwick in England, he also has written extensively on several topics in 20th-century history, most recently on Russia and Eastern Europe after communism. He will not be attending the ceremony.

Leigh Thompson, Charleston, S.C.

At Johns Hopkins: Postdoctoral fellow, Department of Medicine, 1963 to 1967.

Nominator: Solomon H. Snyder, Distinguished Service Professor of Neuroscience, Pharmacology and Psychiatry.

Leigh Thompson is one of the country's leading clinical pharmacologists. At Eli Lilly and Co., he led development of major new therapeutic entities including the first recombinant DNA product, human insulin. During his clinical training and faculty time at Johns Hopkins, he initiated the first intensive care unit and developed hydroxyethyl starch as a blood substitute.

Herbert F. Voigt, Boston

At Johns Hopkins: Postdoctoral fellow, Department of Biomedical Engineering, School of Medicine, with Eric D. Young and Murray B. Sachs, 1979 to 1980.

Nominator: Murray B. Sachs, director, Biomedical Engineering.

A professor of biomedical engineering at Boston University, Herbert Voigt has contributed greatly to the understanding of the mechanics of human hearing. In recognition of his leadership in the field, he was elected president of the Biomedical Engineering Society in 1999 and was a co-recipient of the Biomedical Engineering Society's 2002 Presidential Award. Voigt also writes "Scientifically Speaking," a general interest science and technology column for The Milton Times, a community newspaper in Massachusetts.

Paul Kieran Whelton, New Orleans

At Johns Hopkins: Program director, the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine Outpatient Clinical Research Center, 1982 to 1996; director in Clinical Epidemiology, schools of Public Health and Medicine, 1984 to 1996.

Nominator: Jonathan Samet, chairman, Department of Epidemiology.

Paul Whelton spent most of his professional career at Johns Hopkins, rising through the ranks to become a professor of epidemiology and medicine. Throughout his career, he has made numerous contributions to our understanding of how to prevent heart disease, renal disease and hypertension. Along with Leon Gordis, Whelton is credited with starting the Welch Center for Prevention, Epidemiology and Clinical Research at Johns Hopkins. Whelton is now senior vice president for Health Sciences at Tulane University and was previously dean of the Tulane School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine.