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Dean DellaPenna

MSU’s Dean DellaPenna receives one of science’s top honors

Posted: Monday, May 10, 2021
Author: Matt Davenport
Category: MSU Today

Dean DellaPenna is an MSU Foundation Professor and University Distinguished Professor in the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology. He’s also an avid fisherman.


So it was no surprise when, on the night of Sunday April, 25, he got an email from a longtime friend, colleague and fishing buddy sharing that he was excited to get his boat in the water on Monday morning. DellaPenna had just put his boat in the water the week before. 


On Monday morning, his friend wrote again saying that his boat’s motor was having trouble. The two started exchanging texts and emails to brainstorm remedies. It was on Monday afternoon that the surprise came.


DellaPenna’s friend made one more call but it wasn’t all about boats. (Actually, the boat was still in storage.) But DellaPenna needed to check his email for an invitation to an unexpected Zoom conference to learn that he had received one of the country’s highest scientific honors. DellaPenna had been elected to the National Academy of Sciences.

Read the full story.