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William J. Rutter

biochemist , educator

William J. Rutter, American biochemist, educator. Achievements include patents for; patents pending for. Guggenheim fellow, 1962-1963; recipient Heinz award for Technology and Economic, 1995, Jacob Heskel Gabbay award in Biotechnology and Medicine, 1999, Bower award for Business Leadership, Franklin Institute, 2000, Biotechnology Heritage award, 2003.


Rutter, William J. was born on August 28, 1928 in Malad City, Idaho, United States. Son of William H. and Cecilia (Dredge) Rutter.


Bachelor, Harvard University, 1949. Master of Arts, University Utah, 1950. Doctor of Philosophy, University Illinois, 1952.


United States Public Health Service postdoctoral fellow University Wisconsin, Madison, 1952-1954, Nobel Institute, Stockholm, 1954-1955. From assistant professor to professor biochemistry, department chemistry University Illinois, 1955—1975. Professor biochemistry and genetics University Washington, 1975—1979.

Hertzstein professor biochemistry University California, San Francisco, chairman department biochemistry and biophysics, 1979—1982, director Hormone Research Institute, 1983-1989. Co-founder, Chiron Corporation, 1981, chairman board directors, 1981-1999, chairman emeritus, since 1999. Member United States Public Health Service Biochemistry and Nutrition Fellowship Panel, 1963-1966.

Consultant physiological chemistry study section National Institutes of Health, 1967-1971. Member basic science advisory executive committee National Cystic Fibrosis Research Foundation, 1969-1974, chairman, 1972-1974, president's advisory council, 1974-1975. Executive committee division biology and agriculture National Research Council, 1969-1972.

Member developmental biology panel National Science Foundation, 1971-1973. Member biomedical advisory committee Los Alamos Science Laboratory, 1972-1975. President Pacific Slope Bio-chemical Conference, 1972-1973.

Member board science counselors National Institute Environmental Health Sciences, since 1976. Member advisory committee biology division Oak Ridge National Laboratory, 1976-1980. Advisory board Oak Ridge National Laboratory and Martin-Marietta Energy Systems, 1984-1987.

Basic research advisory committee National Foundation, since 1976. Board directors Keystone Life Science Study Center, Meridian Instruments, 1982-1988, Hana Biologies, 1980-1983. Science advisory board German Center Molecular Biology, University Heidelberg, since 1983, Applied Molecular Genetics, 1979-1981.

Panel science advisors International Center Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology, since 1984. Member board overseers Harvard University, 1992-1996, special commission National Science Foundation, 1992, science advisory board Food and Drug Administration, 1993. Chairman, Chief Executive Officer, Synergenics, LLC.


  • Achievements include patents for. Patents pending for.



Served with United States Naval Reserve, 1945. Board trustee, Carnegie Institution Washington. Member American Society Biological Chemists (treasurer 1970-1976, member editorial board journal 1970-1975), Am Society Cell Biology, American Chemical Society (Pfizer award enzyme chemistry 1967), American Society Developmental Biology (president 1975-1976), National Academy of Sciences., American Academy Arts and Sciences.


Married Jacqueline Waddoups, August 31, 1951 (divorced November 1969). Children: William Henry II, Cynthia Susan. Married Virginia Alice Bourke, 1972 (divorced 1978).

William H. Rutter

Cecilia (Dredge) Rutter

Jacqueline Waddoups

Virginia Alice Bourke

William Henry II Rutter

Cynthia Susan Rutter