Biotechnology Heritage Award
Robert Langer (photo credit: Bachrach)
2014 Winner: Robert Langer
The Chemical Heritage Foundation (CHF) and the Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO) selected Robert Langer as the winner of the 2014 Biotechnology Heritage Award. The award will be presented during BIO’s annual international convention, which will be held in San Diego, June 23–26, 2014.
Robert S. Langer is the David H. Koch Institute Professor at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He has written over 1,240 articles and is the most cited engineer in history. He holds 1,026 patents (512 issued) worldwide, which have been licensed or sublicensed to over 250 pharmaceutical, chemical, biotechnology, and medical-device companies. He served as a member of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s Science Board from 1995 to 2002 and as its chairman from 1999 to 2002.
Langer has been honored with over 220 major awards. He is one of seven individuals to have received both the U.S. National Medal of Science and the National Medal of Technology and Innovation. He has also received the Charles Stark Draper Prize, the Millennium Prize, the Priestley Medal, the Wolf Prize in Chemistry, and the Breakthrough Prize in Life Sciences. He is the only engineer to have been given the Gairdner Foundation International Award. In 1998 he received the Lemelson-MIT Prize for being “one of history’s most prolific inventors in medicine.” Langer has been elected to the Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Sciences, the National Academy of Engineering, the National Academy of Sciences, and the National Academy of Inventors.
Forbes (1999) and BioWorld (1990) named Langer one of the 25 most important individuals in biotechnology in the world. Time and CNN (2001) named him one of the 100 most important people in America and one of the 18 top people in science or medicine in America. Langer has received 22 honorary doctorates from institutions including Harvard University, the Mt. Sinai School of Medicine, Yale University, and the Eidgenössische Technische Hochschule. He received a bachelor’s degree from Cornell University in 1970 and an Sc.D. from MIT in 1974, both in chemical engineering.
About the Biotechnology Heritage Award
The Biotechnology Heritage Award is presented yearly at a special ceremony during the BIO Annual International Convention to honor individuals who have contributed significantly to the growth of biotechnology through discovery, innovation, commercialization, and/or public understanding. In honoring these individuals, the Chemical Heritage Foundation and the Biotechnology Industry Organization seek to encourage emulation, inspire achievement, and promote public understanding of modern science, industry, and economics in this rapid-growth area.
The cosponsorship of the award complements the mission of both organizations by advancing their mutual goals of educating the public, nourishing a sense of pride and community within the industry, and developing the record of the remarkable contributions the molecular sciences make to our lives.
About the Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO)
The Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO) represents more than 1,200 biotechnology companies, academic institutions, state biotechnology centers, and related organizations across the United States and in more than 30 other nations. BIO members are involved in the research and development of health-care, agricultural, industrial, and environmental biotechnology products.
About the Chemical Heritage Foundation (CHF)
The Chemical Heritage Foundation (CHF) is a collections-based nonprofit organization that preserves the history and heritage of chemistry, chemical engineering, and related sciences and technologies. The collections are used to create a body of original scholarship that illuminates chemistry’s role in shaping society. In bridging science with the humanities, arts, and social sciences, CHF is committed to building a vibrant, international community of scholars; creating a rich source of traditional and emerging media; expanding the reach of our museum; and engaging the broader society through inventive public events.