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Bill Atkins and the Legacy of Sid Nelson

bill-atkinsDr. William Atkins has been named the first Sid Nelson Endowed Professor in Medicinal Chemistry. Bill joined the Med Chem faculty in 1991. His research focuses on the biochemical nature of detoxification enzymes and on drug metabolism, with emphasis on biophysical mechanisms. He has been awarded several NIH grants for his research on enzyme systems. His lab also focuses on characterization of nanoparticles for drug delivery and targeted therapy.

“I am honored to receive this professorship, which is really a tribute to Sid’s life and work,” said Bill with typical modesty. “I hope our work in the lab will be a credit to his legacy.”

Sid Nelson was Dean Emeritus of the School of Pharmacy, and a Professor of Medicinal Chemistry. He passed away suddenly in December 2011. The Sid Nelson Memorial Fund, an expression of both grief and regard for Sid, was built with contributions from family, friends, colleagues, together with donations from private industry. The memorial fund later became the Nelson Endowed Professorship; Bill, who was a colleague and co-author with Sid over the years, is its inaugural recipient.

Allan Rettie, Professor and Chairman of Medicinal Chemistry, said: “This is the first named Professorship in the Department of Medicinal Chemistry. That’s an exciting development for us, and Bill is a most worthy recipient.”

School of Pharmacy Dean Tom Baillie said of Bill, “He possesses the devotion to research and education that were the hallmarks of Sid’s career.”

That’s high praise indeed, and we, his colleagues in Med Chem, couldn’t agree more. Congratulations, Bill!


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