Joan Steitz on Jim Watson & CSHL
  Joan Steitz     Biography    
Recorded: 04 Aug 2003

So seeing the kind of place that Cold Spring Harbor Lab is now compared to this sort of sleepy little collection of a few sort of tacky looking labs and a few little cottages with uncomfortable beds for people who came to meetings to sleep in. Blackford, where—I guess that’s what it’s called is Blackford, yeah, where the meeting room used to be compared to the Grace Auditorium. You know, it all fits with Jim’s acquisition with buying pieces of art and his liking to interact with people who circulate in sort of different societies. It might have been predicted but I, of course, couldn’t forsee it. But now that it’s there I can say, ah yes. That’s Jim.

Joan Steitz is a prominent molecular biologist who earned her Ph.D. under Jim Watson at Harvard University in 1967. She joined the faculty at Yale University in 1970 and is currently the Sterling Professor of Molecular Biophysics and Biochemistry and the Director of the Molecular Genetics Program at the Boyer Center for Molecular Medicine at Yale. She is also an Investigator for the Howard Hughes Medical Institute. Steitz’s research involves determining the structure and function of small RNA-protein complexes.

She has received numerous awards including the National Medal of Science (1986), the Weizmann Women and Science Award (1994), the Novartis Drew Award in Biomedical Research (1999), the UNESCO-L'Oréal Women in Science Award (2001), and the Lewis S. Rosenstiel Award for Distinguished Work in Basic Medical Research (2002).