To say that K. Barry Sharpless has had an eventful year might be as understated as saying that he likes chemistry. In addition to receiving the Nobel Prize for chemistry on Dec. 10, Sharpless, W.M. Keck Professor of chemistry at The Scripps Research Institute in La Jolla, Calif., returned to his hometown of Philadelphia earlier in April to receive the Benjamin Franklin Medal, and then again this autumn to receive the John Scott Award. The latter award was bestowed by the Philadelphia Board of City Trusts Nov. 16 at the College of Physicians of Philadelphia. "Being a local boy," exclaims Sharpless, "it feels like Philadelphia has really come through for me this year."

Sharpless pegs the beginnings of his inquisitive nature that spirited his prize-winning research on the long summer days spent at the New Jersey shore fishing or seining for crabs. Be it snapping turtle, eel, or even coelacanth,...

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