Overton Prize Winner, David Baker (photo credit: University
of Washington/Mary Levin)
Prize Recipient: David Baker
Prize was established by the ISCB in memory of G. Christian Overton,
a major contributor to the field of bioinformatics and member of
the ISCB Board of Directors who died unexpectedly in 2000. The prize
is awarded for outstanding accomplishment to a scientist in the
early- to mid- stage of his or her career who has already made a
significant contribution to the field of computational biology through
research, education, service, or a combination of the three. The
first Overton Prize was awarded last year to Christopher Burge of
the Massachusetts Institute of Technology for his work identifying
and modeling genes in higher eukaryotic organisms.
The 2002 Awards
Committee was chaired by David States, and included Donna Slonim,
Søren Brunak, Mike Waterman, Anders Krogh, and Larry Hunter.
In March 2002, members of the Society were invited to submit nominations
to the Awards committee for the 2002 Overton Prize. Nominees from
around the globe were considered. Several outstanding nominations
were received, highlighting the growing talent in bioinformatics.
The Awards Committee
unanimously selected David Baker, Howard Hughes Medical Institute
(HHMI) Investigator and associate professor at the University of
Washington, in recognition of his outstanding contributions in genomics.
His computational technique known as the Rosetta algorithm,
predicts protein folds. He continues to extend and apply his work
to drug design, genetics, and health care.
Baker has previously
won the HHMIs Assistant Investigator Award, as well as Young
Investigator Awards from the Protein Society, the Beckman Foundation,
and the National Science Foundation. Since 1988, Baker has established
a record of publications in protein folding and outstanding structure
prediction using both computational and experimental approaches.
Baker will present
a keynote address at this years Intelligent Systems for Molecular
Biology (ISMB) conference in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, on Wednesday,
August 7th, the final day of the conference.