Jan. 28, 2022

Shirley Tilghman was awarded this year’s George W. Beadle Award for her outstanding contributions to the community of genetics researchers. Dr. Tilghman served on the National Advisory Council for the Human Genome Project Initiative and has tirelessly advocated for transparent, equitable policies, openness in data sharing and publicly available databases, and sustainable funding policies. The award also acknowledges Dr. Tilghman’s pioneering contributions to mammalian imprinting.

The scientists honored for this year’s Genetics Society of America awards, including Dr. Tilghman, will present their work in a lecture series to be held virtually during 2022.

The Genetics Society of America (GSA) established the award in 1999 in honor of an outstanding scientist and a respected academic, administrator, and public servant—George W. Beadle (1903-1989). Beadle was the 1946 GSA president and received the 1958 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine for his work with Edward L. Tatum. The Beadle and Tatum experiments and their “one gene, one enzyme” theory established the linkage between biochemistry and genetics, setting the groundwork for the development of molecular biology.

Beadle was not only an outstanding scientist, but also a respected academic, administrator, and public servant. In addition to academic leadership positions, Beadle served numerous national and international leadership roles, including as chairman of the National Academy of Sciences Committee on the Biological Effects of Atomic Radiation, president of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, and chair of the Scientific Council of the American Cancer Society. He also spoke before school groups and the public, promoting science education and genetics education in particular.

Find out more, story by Liz Fuller-Wright, Office of Communications: Shirley Tilghman wins award for ‘exemplary contributions to the genetics community and society