JCVI: JCVI Founder J. Craig Venter to be Honored by ARCS Foundation as Scientist of the Year
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News Alert 30-Mar-2010

JCVI Founder J. Craig Venter to be Honored by ARCS Foundation as Scientist of the Year

J. CRAIG VENTER, Ph.D., a leading scientist in genomic research, will be honored by the San Diego Chapter of the ARCS Foundation as the 2010 Scientist of the Year at the annual ARCS Scientist of the Year dinner beginning at 6 p.m. Friday, April 23, at the Hilton San Diego Spa & Resort, Mission Bay, 1775 East Mission Bay Drive, San Diego.

This year marks the 25th anniversary of the ARCS Foundation in San Diego, and the 51st year nationally for the organization, which provides Scholar awards to U.S. citizen undergraduate and graduate students in science and medicine. All money donated to the ARCS Foundation goes to the student Scholars. This year, the San Diego Chapter of the ARCS Foundation has provided $317,500 to 42 Scholars at the University of California, San Diego (UCSD), San Diego State University (SDSU), The Scripps Research Institute (TSRI), and the University of San Diego (USD).

Dr. Venter joins a list of prominent scientists who have been honored at past ARCS Scientist of the Year dinners in San Diego, including Drs. Francis Crick, Sally Ride, Walter Munk, Gerald Edelman, Floyd Bloom, Dean Ornish, Richard Lerner, Sydney Brenner and more.

At this year's annual dinner, Dr. Venter will present a talk titled From Reading to Writing the Genetic Code. Dr. Venter is regarded as one of the leading scientists of the 21st century for his numerous contributions to genomic research. He is Founder, Chairman and President of the J. Craig Venter Institute (JCVI), a not-for-profit research organization dedicated to human microbial, plant and environmental research, the exploration of social and ethical issues in genomics, and to seeking alternative energy solutions through genomics.

In 1984, at the National Institutes of Health, he developed Expressed Sequence Tags, or ESTs, a revolutionary new strategy for rapid gene discovery. In 1992 Dr. Venter founded the Institute for Genomic Research (TIGR), a not-for-profit research institute, where in 1995 he and his team decoded the genome of the first free-living organism, the bacterium Haemophilus influenzae, using his new whole genome shotgun technique.

In 1998, Dr. Venter founded Celera Genomics to sequence the human genome using new tools and techniques he and his team developed. This research culminated with the February 2001 publication of the human genome in the journal Science. He and his team at Celera also sequenced the fruit fly, mouse and rat genomes.

The ARCS Scientist of the Year Dinner is open to the public. Reservations are $80 each and may be made by contacting Lois Thompson at sandiego(AT)arcsfoundation.org.

About the ARCS Foundation

In response to the launch of Sputnik 51 years ago, a group of volunteer women in Los Angeles formed the first ARCS chapter to foster American science by financially supporting the country's best and brightest college science students.  Since then, 16 chapters have been opened throughout the country, including San Diego's ARCS chapter 25 years ago.

This event will also showcase the 42 Scholars to whom the local chapter has provided Scholar awards this year in the amount of $317,500.  Over the past 25 years this chapter has given Scholar awards of nearly seven million dollars.

Nationally the ARCS Foundation has awarded more than $70 million in Scholar awards.

Information about ARCS Foundation is available at http://www.arcsfoundation.org/sandiego/.

Event Details

Event: ARCS Foundation 2010 Scientist of the Year Dinner

Honoring: J. Craig Venter, Ph.D., JCVI Founder, as the 2010 Scientist of the Year.

Date & Time: Friday, April 23, 2010, starting at 6:00 P.M. Reception; 7:00 P.M. Award Program; 8:00 P.M. Dinner.

Location: The Hilton San Diego Resort & Spa, Mission Bay, 1775 East Mission Bay Drive, San Diego

ARCS Foundation Mission: The ARCS Foundation provides scholar awards to academically outstanding United States citizens studying to complete degrees in science, medicine and engineering, thereby contributing to the advancement of science and technology.

San Diego Chapter President: Candace Kohl, Ph.D.

Dinner Chairman: Robin Luby

Media Contact

Carolyn Waggoner
Public Relations Chair, Achievement Rewards for College Scientists (ARCS®) Foundation
Email: dandcwaggoner(AT)aol.com
Phone: 619-462-6617