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Communication Associate: Public Relations | Lori Melton | | (218) 726-8830

July 1, 2009
Susan Beasy Latto, Director, UMD Public Relations 218 726-8830
Professor Thomas Johnson, UMD Geological Sciences 218-726-8128

UMD Professor Thomas Johnson Named Regents Professor
by University of Minnesota

Highest Level of Recognition Given to Faculty by the University

Johnson Considered to be World's Leading Scientist
Studying the Evolution of Large Lakes Today

UMD Geology Professor Thomas C. Johnson has been named a Regents Professor by the University of Minnesota Board of Regents. The designation is the highest level of recognition given to faculty by the university. Dr. Johnson is considered to be the world's leading scientist studying the evolution of large lakes today.

In addition to Professor Johnson, two others from the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities were so honored. They are: Bruce Blazar, chief, University of Minnesota Pediatric Bone Marrow Transplant Program, and Lawrence Que, Jr., Distinguished Professor of Chemistry.

The Regents Professor position was established in 1965 by the Board of Regents to recognize the national and international prominence of faculty members. It serves as the highest recognition for faculty who have made unique contributions to the quality of the University of Minnesota through exceptional accomplishments in teaching, research and scholarship or creative work, and contributions to the public good. The addition of the new Regents Professors increases the total number of current Regents Professorships to 30.

UMD Chancellor Kathryn A. Martin said, "UMD is immensely proud that Dr. Tom Johnson has been named a Regents Professor. He joins an illustrious group of exceptional scholars, teachers and researchers in the University of Minnesota system who bring outstanding study and accomplishment to benefit our world."

"Year after year, Regent Professors represent the best and brightest in their fields, and this year's selection is no exception," said University of Minnesota President Robert Bruininks. "Their bold discoveries and commitment to excellence across a wide range of disciplines embody the mission and aspirations of a world-class research and land-grant university."

More about the Regents Professors and Their Research:

Professor Thomas C. Johnson.

Thomas C. Johnson, Geological Sciences, University of Minnesota Duluth [UMD]

Johnson is a professor of geological sciences and founding director of the Large Lake Observatory, University of Minnesota Duluth. He is considered to be the world's leading scientist studying the evolution of large lakes today.

In 1981, he left the Twin Cities campus to accept the position of associate professor of geology and director of limnology at the University of Minnesota Duluth. During this time, he co-founded the International Decade of East African Lakes (IDEAL), a project with results that brought great benefit to the field of paleolimnology, including significant advances in drilling/coring technology, education and training of U.S. and African scientists and students, as well as a better understanding of the physical dynamics, biogeochemistry and paleoclimate history of East African lakes.

He is credited with over 100 publications, many of which are found in some of the highest standard journals in his field. In addition to the many students and postdoctoral researchers that he has educated, and the junior faculty he has mentored, he has also directly supervised or advised at least five students from Kenya who obtained their doctoral degrees through IDEAL initiatives and numerous other students who went on to obtain their masters degree.

Bruce Blazar, University of Minnesota Pediatric Bone Marrow Transplantation Program

Blazar is considered to be one of the foremost translational physician-scientists in the world. He is the chief of the University of Minnesota Pediatric Bone Marrow Transplantation (BMT) Program, director of the U's Center for Translational Medicine and assistant vice president, Clinical and Translational Science Programs

Lawrence Que, Jr., Institute of Technology

Que, Jr. is a 3M/Alumni Distinguished Professor of Chemistry in the Institute of Technology. He is considered to be an internationally acclaimed scholar who has made a tremendous impact in the field of bioinorganic chemistry.

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