Our world-class scientists, including three Nobel Laureates, have revolutionized the prevention, detection and treatment of many cancers and other diseases. Their scientific and medical work consistently wins recognition from national and international organizations.
Hartwell was one of three scientists to share the 1998 award. They were honored for discovering a universal mechanism that controls cell division in all eukaryotic organisms (organisms whose cells contain a nucleus), from yeast to frogs to humans. Hartwell also provided evidence that cells have “checkpoints” for detecting and repairing errors that might occur during cell division. His findings on normal cell division laid the groundwork for further research on how this process goes awry in cancer cells.
The Lasker Awards are among the most respected science prizes in the world. Since 1945, the Lasker Foundation has recognized the contributions of scientists, physicians and public servants who have made major advances in the understanding, diagnosis, treatment, cure and prevention of human disease. Lasker Awards often presage recognition by the Nobel committee, so they have become popularly known as “America's Nobels."
The MacArthur Fellows Program of the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation awards unrestricted $500,000 fellowships to talented individuals who have shown extraordinary originality and dedication in their creative pursuits and a marked capacity for self-direction. The criteria for selection are exceptional creativity, promise for important future advances based on a track record of significant accomplishment, and potential for the fellowship to facilitate subsequent creative work.
Recipients may be writers, scientists, artists, social scientists, humanists, teachers, entrepreneurs or those in other fields, with or without institutional affiliations. They may use their fellowship to advance their expertise, engage in bold new work or, if they wish, to change fields or alter the direction of their career. Although nominees are reviewed for their achievements, the fellowship is not a reward for past accomplishment, but rather an investment in a person’s originality, insight and potential. Indeed, the purpose of the MacArthur Fellows Program is to enable recipients to exercise their creative instincts for the benefit of human society.
The National Academy of Sciences is an honorific society of distinguished scholars who are engaged in scientific and engineering research and dedicated to the furtherance of science and technology and their use for the general welfare. The NAS was signed into being by President Abraham Lincoln on March 3, 1863, at the height of the Civil War. As mandated in its Act of Incorporation, the NAS has served to “investigate, examine, experiment, and report upon any subject of science or art” whenever called upon to do so by any department of the government.
Founded in 1970 as the Institute of Medicine, the National Academy of Medicine (NAM) is a private, nonprofit institution that aims to improve health for all by advancing science, accelerating health equity, and providing independent, authoritative, and trusted advice nationally and globally. The NAM is also an honorific society, its members elected by their peers in recognition of outstanding achievement. Through a commitment to volunteer service, NAM members help guide the work and advance the mission of the NAM and the National Academies.
For more than 225 years, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences has been honoring excellence and providing service to the nation and the world. Through independent, nonpartisan study, its ranks of distinguished “scholar-patriots” have brought the arts and sciences into constructive interplay with the leaders of both the public and private sectors. The Academy was founded during the American Revolution by John Adams, James Bowdoin, John Hancock and other leaders who contributed prominently to the establishment of the new nation, its government and its constitution. Its purpose was to provide a forum for a select group of scholars, members of the learned professions, and government and business leaders to work together on behalf of the democratic interests of the republic. Today the Academy is an international learned society with a dual function: to elect to membership men and women of exceptional achievement, drawn from science, scholarship, business, public affairs and the arts, and to conduct a varied program of projects and studies that are responsive to the needs and problems of society.
The American Association for the Advancement of Science is an international nonprofit organization dedicated to advancing science around the world by serving as an educator, leader, spokesperson and professional association. In addition to organizing membership activities, AAAS publishes the journal Science as well as many scientific newsletters, books and reports, and it spearheads programs that raise the bar of understanding for science worldwide.
The mission of the American Association for Cancer Research Academy is to recognize and honor distinguished scientists whose major scientific contributions have propelled significant innovation and progress against cancer, and to leverage the expertise of the global brain trust of Fellows of the AACR Academy to advance AACR’s mission to prevent and cure all cancers through research, education, communication and collaboration.
The European Academy of Sciences is a nonprofit, non-governmental, independent organization of the most distinguished scholars and engineers performing forefront research and the development of advanced technologies, united by a commitment to promoting science and technology and their essential roles in fostering social and economic development.
The U.K.-based Royal Society is a fellowship of many of the world’s most eminent scientists and is the oldest scientific academy in continuous existence. The Society’s fundamental purpose, reflected in its founding charters of the 1660s, is to recognize, promote and support excellence in science and to encourage the development and use of science for the benefit of humanity.
The Joseph F. Fraumeni Jr. Distinguished Achievement Award is bestowed annually by the American Society of Preventive Oncology. It honors outstanding scientists in the areas of preventive oncology, cancer control and prevention. Presented since 1983, the award was renamed in 2016 in honor of renowned cancer epidemiologist Dr. Joseph Fraumeni Jr., scientist emeritus of the National Cancer Institute Division of Cancer Epidemiology and Genetics. He is perhaps best known for his discovery (along with Dr. Frederick P. Li) of an inherited increased risk of early-onset cancers known as Li-Fraumeni Syndrome.
The Howard Hughes Medical Institute is a nonprofit research organization that engages in the direct conduct of research. The institute's original charter states, “The primary purpose and objective of the Howard Hughes Medical Institute shall be the promotion of human knowledge within the field of the basic sciences (principally the field of medical research and medical education) and the effective application thereof for the benefit of mankind.”
The Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers, or PECASE, conferred annually at the White House, is the highest honor bestowed by the U.S. government on outstanding scientists and engineers beginning their independent careers. The award embodies the government’s commitment to maintaining the nation’s leadership in science by producing outstanding scientists and engineers and nurturing their continued development.
The PECASE is intended to recognize some of the finest scientists and engineers who, while early in their research careers, show exceptional potential for leadership at the frontiers of scientific knowledge during the 21st century. The award fosters innovative and far-reaching developments in science and technology, increases awareness of careers in science and engineering, gives recognition to the scientific missions of participating agencies, enhances connections between fundamental research and national goals, and highlights the importance of science and technology for the nation’s future.
The Allen Distinguished Investigator Award program was launched in 2010 by the Paul G. Allen Frontiers Group, a division of the Allen Institute. The award funds early-stage research that is less likely to receive support from traditional funding sources but has the potential to significantly advance our understanding of biology. The award confers $1.5 million in research support over three years for studies of lymphoma, neuroscience, the immune system, aging and development, and basic biology.
The W. M. Keck Foundation’s Distinguished Young Scholars Program is a groundbreaking initiative created to give the nation’s most promising young scientists the resources needed to pursue potentially breakthrough biomedical research projects. Established as a five-year program in 1999, the W. M. Keck Foundation renewed the program for additional years in 2004 and 2008. The program ended in 2009. During its existence, it awarded nearly $55 million to 54 of America’s most promising scientists, many of whom have gone on to publish pioneering work and assume leadership positions in their field.
The Pew Scholars Program in the Biomedical Sciences, funded by the Pew Charitable Trusts, supports young investigators of outstanding promise in the basic and clinical sciences relevant to the advancement of human health. Nominations for the awards are invited from a limited number of institutions that are selected on the basis of the scope of their biomedical research.
The Searle Scholars Program makes grants to academic institutions to support the independent research of outstanding young faculty in chemistry and the biomedical sciences. Awardees must have recently begun their first tenure-track appointment at the assistant professor level.