Browse Oral Histories Alphabetically

For more information on Jim Jung-Ching Lin, please visit the Pew Scholars in the Biomedical Sciences

For more information on this oral history, please contact the Director of the Center for Oral History. 

Maurice B. Line discusses his education and early career, including his bachelor's and master's degrees in Classics from Oxford University and his first job as a library trainee at Oxford's Bodleian Library. Line also discusses his various library positions and some of his notable accomplishments: assisting in the creation of the first automated acquisition system in Britain, directing INFROSS (a study of social scientists' information requirements) and DISISS (a study on designs of information systems). Additionally, Line speaks about the constraints of working in the public sector, as well as the importance of technology in making libraries more accessible to users. 

W. Ian Lipkin was born in Chicago, Illinois and studied anthropology at Sarah Lawrence College, though a class on inorganic chemistry aroused an interest in science. Wanting to combine his interest in primitive people with his desire to be of service, he attended medical school, studying infectious diseases. During his residency with the University of Washington, he was sent to a Veterans Administration hospital in Idaho, an experience he found to be intense. While at University of California, San Francisco, he became interested in AIDS patients with neurological diseases. After a postdoc at Scripps Research Institute, he accepted an assistant professorship at University of California, Irvine, where he is now Co-Director of the Markey Program in Human Biology. 

Jeffrey M. Lipton was born and raised in Bronx, New York, the son of a Polish immigrant. He attended Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, after which he began a career at DuPont; while working at DuPont he received his MBA from Harvard Business School. Lipton's success at DuPont was recognized quickly, so the company called upon him to undertake various projects and roles; at age twenty-nine Lipton was named business manager and head of marketing of color pigments. He then became, over time, director of the development division, head of the photo products division, COO of New England Nuclear (a DuPont acquisition), vice president of the polymers division, and vice president of the planning division, where, in the search for methods of cost reduction, he developed and utilized cash flow cycle time to analyze the company. He then moved to Nova Chemicals Corporation, which he joined as a CFO. 

Max D. Liston discusses his early career and education, including bachelor's degree in electrical engineering from the University of Minnesota, his first job at Chrysler Corporation, and his master's in mechanical engineering from the Chrysler Institute. Liston transferred to General Motors, then Perkin Elmer, and then formed the Liston-Folb company (later Liston-Becker) with Morris Folb, where his projects included three atmospheric-analyzer models for U. S. Navy submarines and the Model 16 capnograph. Liston discusses the Beckman Instruments acquisition of Liston-Becker, his notable projects while at Beckman, including the development of automobile-emissions analyzers for smog tests in Los Angeles, California, and the formation of Liston Scientific. 

William F. Little discusses his early life in a small town and education, including his discovery of chemistry at Lenoir-Rhyne College, where he received a bachelor's degree in mathematics, biology, and chemistry, and his graduate studies at University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where Little received an M.S. in physical chemistry and Ph.D. in organic chemistry. Little recalls his lengthy career at a few institutions: North Carolina, where Little began as a professor and later, as chairman of the chemistry department, revised the curriculum and got a new laboratory built; the Research Triangle Foundation, where Little helped establish the Research Triangle Park. Additionally little recalls his various administrative responsibilities and assesses his career in North Carolina. 

Fenyong Liu was born in Guangzhou, China. Early on he knew he wanted to pursue science. He attended the prestigious University of Science and Technology of China. Encouraged by his professors, Liu attended graduate school in the United States at University of Chicago. While his initial research focused on the biochemistry of viral DNA replication, Liu focused in the last years of his doctoral study on the genetics of the herpes virus capsid protein, which resulted in a patent and created intense interest from the pharmaceutical industry. He followed up his graduate research with postdoctoral positions at Bristol-Myers Squibb Pharmaceutical Research Institute and Yale University, where he worked with Sidney Altman on the inhibition of antiviral gene expression. His current research has focused on cytomegalovirus infection. 

Roy M. Long grew up in Lebanon, a small town near Hershey, Pennsylvania. Teachers told his parents he was good in science and math, so his parents pushed him toward medicine. Long attended Pennsylvania State University, majoring in molecular and cell biology. He made his decision to pursue scientific research rather than medicine when he took a gene expression class; then, wanting to gain lab experience to see if indeed research would be a good career for him, he worked in Ross Hardison's laboratory. He entered Milton S. Hershey Medical School of Pennsylvania State University for graduate study in biochemistry, where he worked in James Hopper's laboratory. Long accepted a postdoctoral fellowship with Robert Singer at University of Massachusetts Medical School; there his research centered on RNA localization. Long discusses the process of conducting scientific research; setting up and running his laboratory; funding; the impact of the Pew Scholars Program in the Biomedical Sciences grant on his work; and his teaching and administrative responsibilities. 

Robert E. Lorenzini discusses his childhood, early aptitude in engineering and science, and undergraduate and graduate degrees at Stanford University in materials science. After graduation, Lorenzini was recruited by Rheem Semiconductors, where his work led to Rheem's own crystal growing furnace and ability to produce its own silicon wafers; Lorenzini's time at Rheem was followed by stints at Allegheny Electronics Chemical Company, Knapic Electrophysics, and Elmat Corporation. Lorenzini reflects on his time at Siltec Corporation as Chairman and CEO, as well as his time at SunPower Corporation, which he founded with Stanford professor Richard Swanson. 

Marinus Los discusses his early life in the Netherlands and England, as well as his education at Edinburgh University, where he first became interested in biochemistry and received a Ph.D. in that field. Los took a research position at the National Research Council in Canada and conducted research in the structural chemistry of alkaloids and plants before moving on to a research chemist position at American Cyanamid Company. Los discusses his research on imidazolinoes, a type of plant growth regulators, and its results: the herbicides Assert, Arsenal, and Pursuit, as well as a National Medal of Technology. 

Kun Ping Lu was born in Pinghe County, a rural area of Fujian Province in southern China, one of six children. Despite his family's poverty and lack of influence, when Lu reached high school age, he was able to take an entrance exam. His teachers encouraged him to consider college. He was accepted into Fujian Medical School, where he worked in Wang Qinchun's lab. He began a master's program at Suzhou Medical College, where he studied atherosclerosis. There he became interested in cell-growth regulation. Lu had his first plane ride, his first car ride, and his first view of the United States on his way to work as a technician in Anthony Means's laboratory at Baylor College of Medicine. Eventually he was able to begin a doctoral program at Baylor; then he and the Means laboratory transferred to Duke University. Lu describes his doctoral work on calcium-calmodulin signaling in Aspergillus ;  the process of writing journal articles in the Means laboratory; and his postdoctoral fellowship in Tony Hunter's laboratory at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies. From there Lu accepted a position at Harvard School of Medicine. Lu describes his lab; his current research on characterizing the function of peptidyl-prolyl isomerase Pin1 and telomere regulation in cell growth; the practical applications of his research; and the commercialization of his research. 

Robert Luciano his early life and education in New York, as well as his time at City College of New York, his Army service in the Pentagon, and his law degree at the University of Michigan. After several years of practicing law, Luciano accepted a position at Ciba Corporation, where he moved through the ranks to eventually become President of the Pharmaceuticals Division, and later took a position at Schering-Plough Corporation as Senior Vice President of Administration. Luciano discusses research and development at Schering-Plough, his attempts to increase understanding in the pharmaceutical industry that failure in cutting-edge research programs should be expected and tolerated, and the future of the smaller pharmaceutical companies. 

Henry Earl Lumpkin discusses his trajectory from his Texas childhood to his career in mass spectrometry. Lumpkin received his bachelor's degree in chemistry at Southwestern Texas State University and joined the U. S. Army Air Corps, where he took graduate classes in meteorology before taking a position at Humble Oil and Refining Company, where Lumpkin was able to take courses, publish, and take part in innovative research. Lumpkin also discusses his role in the American Society for Testing and Materials, as well as in the American Society for Mass Spectrometry, and his thoughts on the future of mass spectrometry. 

James R. Lupski was born on Long Island, New York, and as a child developed Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease (CMT), which required several surgeries that kept him at home for much of high school. Based on his experiences, he decided to become a doctor. He won a scholarship to New York University (NYU) to study chemistry and biology. In David Schuster's laboratory he tried to isolate brain receptors; during summers he worked at Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, learning to clone genes. After receiving an MD/PhD from NYU, he was given a faculty appointment at Baylor University, where he set up his own lab and began his research into the genetics of CMT. Lupski eventually patented a diagnostic test for CMT and continues his research on the disease. 

For more information on Marla Luskin, please visit the Pew Scholars in the Biomedical Sciences.

For more information on this oral history, please contact the Director of the Center for Oral History. 

Alan G. MacDiarmid begins his interview by discussing his childhood and the two books that sparked his interest in chemistry. MacDiarmid, with degrees from University of New Zealand, University of Wisconsin, Madison, and University of Cambridge, focused his work on inorganic chemistry and accepted a faculty position at University of Pennsylvania. MacDiarmid discusses his lengthy career at Penn, his Nobel Prize-winning work with Hideki Shirakawa and Alan Heeger, and the benefits of interdisciplinary research. 

Paul M. Macdonald was born in Denver, Colorado. Uninterested in school and preferring outdoor sports, attended Colorado State University's forestry school, but remained undirected until a class with Larry Hopwood in radiation biology. He loved the class and worked in the lab. Because of his excellent GRE scores and his lab work he was able to attend graduate school at Georgia Tech, where he worked on bacteriophage mutant. After finishing his Ph.D. at Vanderbilt and postdocs at Harvard and Columbia, he took a faculty position at Stanford University. His work included studying how molecules that control patterning are localized, comparing RNA sequences from different Drosophila species, redundancy of information in Drosophila RNA, and the role of chance in his mRNA oskar research. 

John D. Macdougall summarizes his graduate and doctoral work before discussing his career at Sprague Electric Company in the research and development department, specifically working on ion implementation. At Sprague, Macdougall built a permanent magnet velocity filter and scanning system, worked on PNP transistors, implanted TTL circuits and linears circuits, and aided in the developmental progress of MOS [metal oxide semiconductors] to MOSFETS [meta oxide semiconductor field effect transistors], among other projects. Macdougall also discusses his move to the Worcester facility, the sale of Sprague to General Cable, and his work in engineering management at General Cable. 

Ronald Macfarlane was born in Buffalo, New York. Macfarlane attended the University of Buffalo, majoring in analytical chemistry before entering Carnegie Institute of Technology for a PhD. He accepted a postdoctoral position at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, working on alpha activity in rare earth elements. Macfarlane accepted a job at McMaster University where he accidentally created a more efficient way to get ionized particles, which he named the “helium jet recoil method.” Recruited by Arthur Martell, Macfarlane joined the new chemistry department at Texas A&M as a professor. Macfarlane’s work on nuclear chemistry eventually led to an incidental discovery on what became known as 252californium plasma desorption mass spectrometry. Leaving nuclear chemistry to concentrate on mass spectrometry, Macfarlane spent fifteen years developing the first method to characterize the mass of large, fragile biomolecules, which quickly became well known and widely used to characterize a wide spectrum of biomolecules especially in the pharmacy and medicine fields. Macfarlane continues to teach analytical chemistry his way, incorporating constructivism, conceptual learning, and other elements of educational psychology.

Carolyn E. Machamer was born near Detroit, Michigan, and showed early interest in biology. She attended Bucknell University, taking all the science courses on offer, working on acrosomes in Sally Nyquist's lab. Machamer took a fellowship at Duke University and began work on SSPE virus. She worked in Peter Cresswell's lab, where she finished her thesis research on major histocompatibility complex antigens. She then took a postdoc at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies, where she worked in John K. Rose's lab, studying M glycoprotein and RNA viruses. Improved technology allowed a breakthrough in her coronavirus research, which she published after moving to Yale University, where she stayed for about a year. Machamer then joined the faculty of Johns Hopkins University, where she remains today. 

Roderick MacKinnon was born in Melrose, Massachusetts. While at University of Massachusetts, Boston, science came easily, so he continued his undergraduate work in biochemistry at Brandeis University. Unsure what he wanted to do after college, MacKinnon entered Tufts University medical school, though he quickly realized he did not want to practice medicine. He explains how his childhood interest in understanding natural systems, problem-solving, and mathematics led to this decision. He spent time working in Christopher Miller's lab, then accepted a position at Harvard Medical School, where he applied a structural biology approach to the study of ion channels. MacKinnon talks about his teaching and research responsibilities at Rockefeller University, where he now works, recent molecular genetics work, ion channel structure research, collaborative work, and more. 

Robert Maddin begins the interview by discussing his childhood and education and early work experiences including his time at Brooklyn College, his B.Sc. in metallurgical engineering, his Dr. Eng in metallurgy at Yale University, and his Armed Forces service during World War II. Maddin spent several years teaching at Johns Hopkins University before moving on to the University of Pennsylvania, where he was the head of the metallurgy department. Maddin describes starting up the Laboratory for Research on the Structure of Matter and his shift to the history of science, including his second career at Harvard University's anthropology department. 

Boris Magasanik begins the interview by discussing his childhood years, move to the United States from Austria just before World War II. Magasanik's graduate studies in biochemistry at Pennsylvania State University were interrupted by World War II, in which Magasanik served; he resumed his studies at Columbia University postwar and researched inositols and RNA. Magasanik discusses his career at Harvard University, as well as his time at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where Magasanik is still a faculty member and founded the Center for Cancer Research. 

For more information on Terry Magnuson, please visit the Pew Scholars in the Biomedical Sciences.

For more information on this oral history, please contact the Director of the Center for Oral History. 

Alfred T. Malouf has always been curious about how things worked. At the University of California, San Diego, he took a class in pharmacology with Morton Printz and spent two years in Printz's lab. He then studied neuroscience at Johns Hopkins University and entered Joseph Coyle's lab to work on kainic acid. Still fascinated by how things work, he accepted a postdoc with Floyd Bloom at Scripps Research Institute, where he learned physiology and electrophysiology. Next, he accepted a fellowship in Philip Schwartzkroin's lab at the University of Washington, studying the physiology of the hippocampus. Malouf now has his lab at Case Western Reserve University. He finds basic science exciting, but he also loves to see clinical relevance; he tries to balance intellectual pursuit with societal goals. 

Kenneth E. Manchester discusses his service in World War II and his educational experiences, including his A.B. at San Jose State College,his M.S. and Ph.D. at Stanford  University, and postdoctoral fellowship under Eric Hutchinson. Manchester first joined Shell Development Company and later moved to Sprague Electric Company, where he directed a research group that pioneered in the development of ion implantation and later headed semiconductor research and quality assurance. He concludes the interview with his thoughts on the need for chemists in semiconductor development. 

Leo Mandelkern begins the interview by discussing his early life and education at Cornell University, including his graduate work and associations with J. G. Kirkwood, Franklin Long, and Paul Flory. Mandelkern also recalls his career at the National Bureau of Standards as well as his recent work at Florida State University. He concludes by commenting on methods of solving scientific controversies. 

Robert J. Manning begins the interview by discussing his educational background in chemistry and his United States Navy research on rocket fuel. Manning relates the details of his lengthy career at Beckman Instruments, Inc., where he gravitated toward infrared instrumentation. Manning also reflects on education and information sharing at Beckman. 

Timothy L. Manser majored in biology at University of California, San Diego, working on Dictyostelium in William Loomis’ lab. For graduate school he chose University of Utah. Influenced by Martin Rechsteiner, Manser began work in small nuclear RNAs focusing on the genes that encoded these RNAs in humans. When he had had enough of DNA cloning and sequencing of genes he decided to switch fields to immunology. He took a postdoc at Massachusetts Institute of Technology with Malcolm Gefter. Manser’s first job was at Princeton University, where he has continued his work on B cells.

Raymond March was born in Newcastle upon Tyne, England. March’s childhood was shaped by World War II, and by a mysterious polio-like paralysis which caused him to miss a great deal of school. He took an apprenticeship with PAMETRADA (Parsons and Marine Engineering Turbine Research and Development Association) Research Station before gaining admittance to University of Leeds. There he majored in chemistry and was in the University Air Squadron. He accepted a scholarship to the University of Toronto, where he worked on flash photolysis with John Polanyi. March developed a needle loop technique at Johnson & Johnson, then took a postdoc position in at McGill University, where he worked on methyl metals and microwave discharges; on atmospheric chemistry; and on aluminum trimethyl and impact work for Gerald Bull, who built the supergun. He took an assistant professorship at the brand-new Trent University in Peterborough, Ontario. On a sabbatical in France, March learned mass spectrometry and ion traps from Jean Durup and has continued to specialize in quadrupole mass spectrometers and to refine ion traps. Becoming interested in flavonoids, March established the Trent University Water Quality Centre and added an interest in antibiotics. March discusses his contributions to the establishment of Trent University; his role on the editorial board of the International Journal of Mass Spectrometry; his many friends and colleagues; his trips to Europe; funding; and his patents. He concludes with an encomium of the quadrupole ion trap mass spectrometer on the Rosetta mission to characterize a comet.

Rudolph A. Marcus discusses his early life and education, including his time at McGill University, where he received a Ph.D. in chemistry and worked on World War II-related research with Carl Winkler, and at University of North Carolina, where in his postdoctoral research he began to focus on theory, specifically RRKM theory. Marcus also discusses his time as a professor at Brooklyn Polytechnic University, including his colleagues and his interest in electrostatics and polyelectrolytes, and his later position at University of Illinois. Marcus concludes his interview by speaking about his most current academic position at California Institute of Technology and his thoughts on his electron transfer work. 

Marvin Margoshes grew up in New York City, New York. He was always interested in science, settling on chemistry when he was at Brooklyn Technical High School.  After high school Margoshes worked in a chemistry lab at New York University Medical School until he enlisted in the US Army.  He was sent to the Pacific theater, where he fought in the Battle of Leyte and the Battle of Okinawa.  After the war, Margoshes enrolled at Brooklyn Polytechnic Institute, then did his graduate work at Iowa State University, where his advisor, Velmer Fassel, assigned him to run an infrared spectroscopy lab with George Hammond.  Margoshes then moved on to Harvard University, where he was a research fellow, had an unpaid job in flame spectroscopy at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and worked with Bert Vallee on a study of cadmium as a cause of hypertension. Margoshes began work in the analytical chemistry spectrometry group of Bourdon Scribner at the National Bureau of Standards (NBS). There he worked with cyanogen and spent a year studying Russian, as most of the work published about cyanogen was in that language. Margoshes began computer work using the time sharing computer; he invented a coenzymometer (DetermiTubes), and had an idea for a glucose analyzer but could not sell the idea to Technicon. After nearly twenty years at NBS, Margoshes went to work at Block Engineering, doing Fourier transform analysis with Tomas Hirschfeld.  After just two years he moved to Technicon. Technicon was sold several times; when Bayer AG acquired it Margoshes quit because Bayer refused to do business in Israel. At the end of the interview, Margoshes moves on to a discussion of the evolution of electronics, the development of small instruments, and the size and power of computers. Throughout the interview Margoshes stresses the importance of broad general knowledge. His advice to young people is not to specialize too much, as everything changes, often rapidly.

Herman Mark begins his three-part interview by discussing his research at the Universities of Vienna and Berlin, as well as at the Kaiser Wilhelm Institute, where Mark collaborated with various colleagues and used x-ray diffraction to establish the crystal structures of small organic molecules and metals. Mark also discusses his time at I. G. Farben, where he established a polymer laboratory and, due to the worsening political climate, left for Vienna to set up the first comprehensive polymer research and training institute. Mark recalls setting up the Polymer Research Institute at Brooklyn Polytechnic Institute and his role in the formation of the literature of polymer science and technology. 

Russell E. Marker discusses his early life, including his childhood in a farming community, as well as his education, including his time at the University of Maryland. Marker recalls his positions at the Naval Powder Factory and the Ethyl Gasoline Corporation, where he devised the octane rating system. Marker also talks about his interest in synthesizing human hormones from plants and his travels to Mexico to examine indigenous plant life. 

Rory M. Marks was born in Sydney, Australia. He was always interested in how things work, and once took apart the garbage disposal to better understand it. Marks attended the University of New South Wales, then entered medical school. After his third year he did an optional year of research, working with T-cell immunity to salmonella in rats; after three or four years in the same lab he chose vascular biology for his field. After an internship in Australia, Marks decided science was best in the United States, and went to the University of Michigan, working in Peter Ward's lab on oxygen-deprived free radicals in vascular tissue damage. He is still at the University of Michigan, where he continues to study tropical diseases and their vascular implications. 

John C. Martin begins the interview by describing Gilead when he first joined in 1990. Martin recalls his first meeting with Gordon E. Moore, who joined the board around the same period as Martin. Martin then reflectes on serving on the Gilead board with Donald Rumsfeld and Moore, and also explains how Moore's experiences at Intel helped shaped polices of the compensation committee and audit committee on which he served. Lastly Martin speaks about Gilead's no-profit tiered pricing policy and the impact it has on developing countries, as well as final thoughts on Moore. 

Carl Marvel discusses his early life, including his youth on a farm, and his education, including his undergraduate years at Illinois Wesleyan College and his graduate studies at University of Illinois. Marvel recalls his consulting work for DuPont and his World War II work, including his direction of the federal rubber program and anti-malarial and chemical warfare agents research. Marvel concludes by speaking about his most recent research in polymers, his family, hobbies, and involvement with the American Chemical Society. 

Thomas Mastin begins this interview by discussing his childhood in Indiana and the untimely death of his father. He then explains the origins of his interest in chemistry, his early career at Lubrizol, and his transition from research into management. Mastin shares his opinions on management philosophy and the place of research in the chemical industry. Finally, Mastin reflects on the changes in the industry, his receipt of the Society of Chemistry Award, and his continued interest in photography and nature study. 

For more information on Paul T. Matsudaira, please visit the Pew Scholars in the Biomedical Sciences.

For more information about this oral history, please contact the Director of the Center for Oral History. 

William W. Mattox was born in South Bend, Indiana and attended Michigan State University, where he worked in Drosophila and RNA processing labs; his ideas of science and of himself evolved from being around others in science, reading, and coursework. At the California Institute of Technology, he worked in Norman Davidson's lab on heldup-A gene. He became interested in sex determination when heard a talk by Bruce Baker, who explained that temperature differences sometimes determine sex in a number of animals. As a result, he took a postdoc in Baker's lab at Stanford University. Now at MD Anderson Cancer Center, he teaches experimental genetics, sits on student committees, and attempts to keep up with the explosion of scientific knowledge now so much more easily available. 

Mayo traces his professional career as a research chemist with Du Pont, as an instructor at the University of Chicago where his primary role was the supervision of Morris Kharasch's research group, as a group leader at U. S. Rubber during and after World War II, as a research associate at General Electric, and finally as a fellow at SRI International. He also comments on the rise of free radical chemistry and the value of applying basic research to practical problems. 

McAfee discusses his career in chemical engineering, having studied at the University of Texas and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and having worked as a research and operating engineer for Universal Oil Products Company before accepting a position as technical specialist with Gulf Oil Corporation in Port Arthur. He served as Chairman of the Board and CEO of Gulf for six years before retiring in 1981. His career with Gulf took him to Pennsylvania, London, and Toronto. 

McBrayer discusses his studies in chemical engineering at Vanderbilt University and his career at Exxon, eventually becoming president of the corporation. During his years at Exxon Chemical, McBrayer was heavily involved in environmental issues; he helped to set up Clean Sites, Inc. and has been active in the Chemical Manufacturers Association Responsible Care program. In 1992, the same year that he was awarded the Chemical Industry Medal, McBrayer retired from Exxon Chemical. 

James A. McCloskey, Jr. , grew up in San Antonio, Texas. He entered Trinity University in San Antonio, where he majored in chemistry; he earned a PhD in analytical chemistry from Massachusetts Institute of Technology. After fulfilling his ROTC commitment by working for the US Army Chemical Corps, McCloskey returned to Klaus Biemann's lab at MIT, where he began his lifelong interest in and study of nucleosides/nucleotides, necessitating different types of mass spectrometers. He turned down the Karolinska Institutet for a job at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, Texas. He began a twenty-year collaboration with Susumu Nishimura in Tokyo, Japan, and made his first of many trips there. His lab discovered the nucleoside Q. He began his part of the search for the roots of the tree of life, which consists of bacteria, eukaryotes, and archaea. McCloskey spent six months of a sabbatical at the National Cancer Research Institute in Tokyo before going to the University of Utah as a visiting professor. He decided to accept a full professorship there. McCloskey became secretary, vice president, then president of the American Society for Mass Spectrometry (ASMS). 

Susan McConnell attended Harvard University, majoring in biology and specializing in animal behavior. She found summer work at the Wisconsin Primate Center, but still questioned the mechanisms of behavior and began thinking in terms of cells. After graduation she worked for Howard Gardner at the Harvard Graduate School of Education. Interested more than ever in cells, especially the neuron, and found that work critical for formulating her continued studies. McConnell entered Simon LeVay’s lab at Harvard, working in the visual system in mammals and moving with the lab to the Salk Institute for Biological Studies. For postdoctoral work, McConnell went to Carla Shatz’s lab at Stanford University, funded by the National Eye Institute. McConnell accepted a professorship at Stanford, which she loves.

Sharon McCormick grew up Northeast Philadelphia. Moving when her children were adolescent, she chose Ambler for its walkability, quaintness, and neighborhood feel. At that time she did not know about the asbestos dumps there. She increased her involvement when the Borough Council wanted to permit a high-rise on the BoRit Asbestos Area. She immersed herself in research about asbestos and the previous EPA remediation in Ambler. She encountered the frustration of dealing with a bureaucracy, but helped fund Citizens for a Better Ambler and the BoRit community advisory group. Other residents became educated and were also galvanized to demand more comprehensive containment and monitoring of the waste. McCormick was elected to the Borough of Ambler Council, informing people of health risks. She has been championing full removal of the asbestos factory and new technology to accomplish the task. McCormick's has taken pictures of the waste still extant and has compiled statistics of the area's deaths and illnesses due to asbestos. She fights repeatedly against the appellation "acceptable risk," which she insists does not mean "safe." Nevertheless, McCormick loves living in Ambler. 

Timothy J. McDonnell was always fascinated with the natural world. He left high school early without graduating and attended the United States International University, where he studied biology, transferring to University of California, San Diego. McDonnell attended graduate school at the University of North Dakota for his Ph.D. and M.D. , where he taught anatomy and worked in the John O. Oberpriller laboratory; his research on cardiac muscle demonstrated that differentiated cells are not necessarily postmitotic. Wanting to combine research with practice, he accepted a postdoc in the Stanley Korsmeyer lab, searching for cancer-causing genes in mice. Next, McDonnell accepted an appointment at the University of Texas. McDonnell discusses learning molecular biology techniques, programmed cell death, growth rate of cancer cells, and mice as models of human disease. 

Anne McDonough grew up in State College, Pennsylvania. At Pennsylvania State University she majored in biology and environment and in education. She now teaches science at Wissahickon High School. Her husband is also in the sciences. To be close to their jobs they settled in Ambler. Though they knew about the area’s asbestos-containing waste, they decided that the EPA’s remediation had the risk under control. McDonough says that as a scientist she is more concerned about the unknown substances in our everyday lives than about the remediated asbestos. In the case of the proposed high-rise, though, she thought that digging would send the asbestos airborne, at which point it would become dangerous. She was chosen for the REACH teaching project; it is a three-year science course for high-school students that she hopes will teach students when and how to become active in their communities, as well as basic science concepts. McDonough talks a little about the improved economic situation and the increase in college-bound high-school students in Ambler. She credits the citizens of the various affected boroughs and townships with identifying the asbestos danger and with successfully petitioning for inclusion on the EPA’s National Priorities List. She emphasizes the importance of communication between EPA and community.

Keith McKennon discusses his youth and interests in research and chemistry, as well as his subsequent years at Oregon State University. McKennon reflects on his multiple career paths at Dow Chemical Company and Shell Chemical Company, from working in a sales position to research management and then as a Director of government relations and public issues. McKennon describes his next major career turn-dealing with public concern about dioxin in Agent Orange, and later, at Dow Corning, with the silicon implant affair. 

Michael McKeown grew up in a small town near San Francisco, California. McKeown attended Stanford University, where he began in math but switched to biology. He liked the small classes and the opportunity for close interaction with the faculty. He worked in a lab during summers, studying bacteria and publishing one paper on thymidine.McKeown decided to use his Helen Hay Whitney Foundation Fellowship at University of California, San Diego. He began working in Dictyostelium in Richard Firtel’s lab, but switched to Drosophila. For his postdoc, McKeown stayed at UCSD and worked in Bruce Baker’s lab. McKeown accepted an offer at The Salk Institute for Biological Studies, continuing his work on Drosophila.