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Oral history interview with Glen A. Evans

  • 1989-Nov-20

Oral history interview with Glen A. Evans

  • 1989-Nov-20

Glen A. Evans grew up in San Diego, California, the oldest of three children. He first decided on a science career when he was in high school, and during the summer before he matriculated at UCSD he worked in Renato Dulbecco’s lab. He graduated in just three years, with a major in biology, enough credits for another major in chemistry, and with two published papers. Evans entered the Medical Scientist Training Program offered by the National Institutes of Health (NIH), choosing UCSD, where he continued work he had begun as an undergraduate in Michael G. Rosenfeld’s lab on activation of hormone genes in the pituitary gland. Evans’ first job was in Philip Leder’s lab at the NIH’s Public Health Service, funded by the U.S. Navy. Finding the lab too large, Evans moved to Jonathan Seidman’s lab to work on histocompatibility antigens. When Leder and Seidman left NIH for Harvard University, taking most of the lab with them, Evans decided to finish his third year and then move to the Salk Institute for Biological Studies. Though he has to fund his own work at the Salk he finds it intellectually free, smaller, and more efficient. His lab is mostly involved with the Human Genome Project. To finish the interview Evans discusses his documentation, a typical day at work, his rolling contract, and his ideal lab environment.

Property Value
Place of interview
  • 39 pages
Rights Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License
Rights holder
  • Science History Institute
Credit line
  • Courtesy of Science History Institute

About the Interviewer

Arnold Thackray founded the Chemical Heritage Foundation and served the organization as president for 25 years. He is currently CHF’s chancellor. Thackray received MA and PhD degrees in history of science from Cambridge University. He has held appointments at Cambridge, Oxford University, and Harvard University, the Institute for Advanced Study, the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences, and the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. In 1983 Thackray received the Dexter Award from the American Chemical Society for outstanding contributions to the history of chemistry. He served for more than a quarter century on the faculty of the University of Pennsylvania, where he was the founding chairman of the Department of History and Sociology of Science and is currently the Joseph Priestley Professor Emeritus.

Institutional location

Oral history number 0723

Related Items

Interviewee biographical information

  • November 14, 1952
  • San Diego, California, United States
  • September 06, 2010
  • Rancho Santa Fe, California, United States


Year Institution Degree Discipline
1973 University of California, San Diego BA Biology
1979 University of California, San Diego MD
1979 University of California, San Diego PhD Chemistry

Professional Experience

Stanford University. Medical Center

  • 1979 to 1980 Intern in Internal Medicine

National Institutes of Health (U.S.)

  • 1980 to 1983 Research Associate

Salk Institute for Biological Studies

  • 1983 to 1990 Assistant Professor


Year(s) Award
1973 BA in Biology with Highest Honors
1974 to 1979 University of California Regents Scholarship, UCSD School of Medicine
1974 California State Graduate Fellowship
1975 California Foundation for Biochemical Research Fellowship
1975 to 1979 NIH Pre-doctoral Trainee, NIGMS
1976 Mead Johnson Excellence of Research Award
1976 Roche Laboratories Award in Neurosciences
1977 American Cancer Society Award
1985 to 1989 Pew Scholars in the Biomedical Sciences Award

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PDF — 404 KB

The published version of the transcript may diverge from the interview audio due to edits to the transcript made by staff of the Center for Oral History, often at the request of the interviewee, during the transcript review process.

Complete Interview Audio File Web-quality download

4 Separate Interview Segments Archival-quality downloads