The Henry Baldwin Ward Medal
Brief history and list of awardees
Updated: 13 January 2000
History. It was at the 1957 council meeting in Philadelphia when Paul C. Beaver proposed that the Society consider an award or prize for encouraging fundamental research on parasites and parasitism (1958, J. Parasitol. 44: 119). Council authorized then President Gilbert F. Otto to appoint a committee to study the proposal, which ultimately consisted of Paul C. Beaver (Chair), Leslie A. Stauber, and Donald B. McMullen (1959, J. Parasitol. 45: 123). The following year, that committee reported to Council that Parke, Davis and Company had generously agreed to serve as sponsor for the award (1959, J. Parasitol. 45: 123). They recommended that each year an award consisting of $1,000 cash, travel expenses to the annual meeting, and a Medal be presented to a recipient. The design and title of this medal were to be designated by the Society. The committee recommended the award be named in honor of Henry Baldwin Ward, who both founded the Journal of Parasitology and was the Society's first President. Parke, Davis and Company sponsored the award until 1970, at which time they withdrew their support and council voted unanimously to continue awarding the Medal (but not the money) under the sponsorship of the Society (1971, J. Parasitol. 57: 201). Later, at the 75th Council meeting, the cash award plus travel expenses were re-established for the recipient (1985, J. Parasitol. 71: 711). Official guidelines for nominating a candidate were formally recommended and officially adopted at the 61st annual Council meeting (1972, J. Parasitol. 58: 198), with later revisions (1979, J. Parasitol. 65: 304; 1983, J. Parasitol. 69: 37). Some additional discussions, including some suggested guidelines that were never adopted, may also be of interest (1991, J. Parasitol. 77: 826-827; 1994, J. Parasitol. 80: 866-867). The 75th Council voted to abolish the secrecy surrounding future medalists (1985, J. Parasitol. 71: 711), and the 78th Council abolished the requirement for the candidate to be younger than age 40 (1988, J. Parasitol. 74: 929-930).
Although the H.B. Ward Medal was first given to Clark P. Read in 1959, the Medal had not yet been created or even designed. That job fell to Justus F. Mueller, who one year earlier had also designed the official Society seal that appears both on the Medal and in past issues of the Journal (1960, J. Parasitol. 46: 112-113). Because no "suitable" profile photograph of H.B. Ward was available, a profile of a younger H.B. Ward served as a basis for the casting. However, they managed to work in wrinkles from later photographs to make the likeness more "distinguished." Dr. Mueller announced the completion of the design in 1961 (1961, J. Parasitol. 47: 206-208). The Medal was awarded retroactively to Clark Read (1960, J. Parasitol. 113-115), and as far as I know has been awarded to all medalists since.
Customarily, only one individual is selected each year to receive the H.B. Ward Medal. However, this does not have to be the case and it so happened that the Awards committee tied in its selection of the prize-winning candidate in 1960. A decision could not be reached and, accordingly, no award was made that year. Because of this tie, Parke, Davis and Company suggested that two medals be awarded in 1961, and both Robert L. Rausch and Elvio H. Sadun received joint awards that year (1962, J. Parasitol. 48: 166). Based solely on the way the committee report is written, it indicates to me that Dr. Rausch was designed the 1960 recipient and Dr. Sadun the 1961 recipient. Only in one other year was the award not presented. Officials of the Second International Congress of Parasitology requested Council not to make an award at the joint 1970 meeting in Washington because of what they termed the "international tenor" of the Congress. The 59th Council unanimously agreed to appease the International Congress and no award was presented in 1970 (1970, J. Parasitol. 56: 408).
Qualifications. The recipient shall be a member of the Society for no less than three years at the time of the nomination and mid-career, and who, by self-directed investigations, shall have attained a position of leadership in some phase of parasitological research. The field of parasitology is considered to include, in general, those aspects of the science which are represented by reports published in the official organ of the Society, the Journal of Parasitology.
Chronologic list of the 41 recipients and page numbers of acceptance speeches
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