Purnell W. Choppin, a longtime member of the Lasker Foundation’s Board of Directors, has passed away at age 91. During a lifetime marked by a love for research and a devotion to the scientific enterprise, Choppin was an institution builder and a renowned virologist.
Choppin joined the faculty of Rockefeller University in 1959 after earning his medical degree in 1953, performing an internship at Barnes Hospital in St. Louis, and serving as an U.S. Air Force medical officer. At Rockefeller he led a lab that investigated viral structure, replication, and mechanism of infection. Choppin joined Howard Hughes Medical Institute in 1985. Two years later, he was appointed President of HHMI, where he served for a dozen years, retiring at the end of 1999.
Choppin was a member of the Lasker Board from 1999 until 2011 and served as a Director Emeritus until he passed away. He will be missed.