Natural Science Hall of Fame to Induct Four

Four Southwestern College graduates will be inducted into the Southwestern College Natural Science Hall of Fame on Saturday, Nov. 12.  The new members are Jeffrey Boone, Darrell English, Jessie Gulick, and Kenneth Laws. The plaques will be on display prior to the 5:30 p.m. dinner in the Deets Library.  The induction ceremony will begin at the conclusion of the meal, at approximately 6:15. 

The hall of fame honors Southwestern College alumni who have made significant contributions to the natural science world.

Jeffrey L. Boone ’73, M.D., M.S., is a consultant in cardiometabolic health, preventive cardiology, and stress medicine. In 2007, he was selected as one of the 160 top doctors in America by “Men’s Health Magazine,” and in the top 17 cardiovascular doctors for men. He is president, CEO, and medical director of the Boone Heart Institute, a Denver-based organization dedicated to the eradication of heart disease and stroke. As national co-director of the NFL Player Care Foundation Cardiovascular Program, Boone works with former professional football players to eliminate heart disease and stroke in this high-risk, high-profile group. In 2009, the Boone Heart Institute initiated preventive cardiology testing with the Colorado Rockies. His approach to early detection and aggressive prevention of heart disease has been presented in 12 countries and in 47 states.

Darrel S. English ’59 earned his Ph.D. in genetics at Iowa State University then spent the next 30 years teaching a variety of undergraduate and graduate courses at Northern Arizona University. He was Mortar Board Professor of the Year there (1988) and received the NAU Presidential Award for Faculty Advisor of the Year (1995).  He was biology department director of advisement for well over 1,000 biology majors each year.  English was a participant on the Genetics Disease Review and Advisory Committee for the Department of Health and Human Services, and supervised the research of many graduate and undergraduate students.  In addition to his research work in cytogenetics and protein chemistry, English has numerous scholarly publications on the broader issues surrounding genetic engineering and DNA testing.

Jesse R. Gulick ’44 began his distinguished science career as a scholarship student at Southwestern College, worked for the U.S. Weather Bureau, and then was drafted into service as a military meteorologist during World War II. During his 4½ years in the military he attended UCLA for a year of intense meteorological study, thereby completing his Southwestern degree. After discharge from the Navy in 1945, he returned to the U.S. Weather Bureau and was a professional meteorologist in the Honolulu office until his transfer to the Kansas City office. There he worked as a district forecaster until 1960 when he was recruited to work on the NASA space program’s Project Mercury. He continued with the space program until 1978, when he retired as chief meteorologist for the Kennedy Space Center.

Kenneth I. Laws ’72 turned an early fascination with computers into a career as a computer scientist. His dissertation research at the University of Southern California (for a 1980 Ph.D. in electrical engineering) developed a new method of image texture recognition, and the Laws texture measures are used today as a benchmark in texture recognition studies. He then was employed by SRI International in the Artificial Intelligence Center.  In 1988 the National Science Foundation chose Laws as program director for Robotics and Machine Intelligence. He ran a grant program distributing almost $6 million annually. In 1990 Laws founded Computists International, a society that published an online newsletter for AI scientists. In 2002 he closed Computists International and accepted a contractor position at NASA Ames Research Center in the Intelligent Systems Division working on website and database development for an aircraft data bus system.

Pat Ross, division chair for science at Southwestern College, will be the master of ceremonies.  Prior to the hall of fame inductions, there will be introductions of the Mastin Scholars, internship participants, and the Tri-Beta officers.

For more information about the dinner or the Natural Science Hall of Fame, call Susan Lowe, director of alumni programs at Southwestern College, at (620) 229-6334.


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