Dr. Richard A. Lerner's 40-year scientific career is significant not only for the broad scope of his scientific achievements, but for his leadership as President of The Scripps Research Institute, 1986-2012, the country’s largest private, non-profit biomedical research organization. The scientific accomplishments for which he is perhaps most well know are the groundbreaking work of converting antibodies into enzymes, permitting the catalysis of chemical reactions considered impossible to achieve by classical chemical procedures and his development of combinatorial antibody libraries, simultaneously with Greg Winter.
A member of the National Academy of Sciences and a foreign member of the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences, Dr. Lerner graduated from Northwestern University and Stanford Medical School. He interned at Palo Alto Stanford Hospital and received postdoctoral training at Scripps Clinic and Research Foundation. Since 1970 he has held staff appointments at Wistar Institute in Philadelphia and at The Scripps Research Institute.
Dr. Lerner has received numerous honorary degrees, prizes and awards, Including, Parke Davis Award, San Marino Prize, Arthur C. Cope Scholar Award, CIBA-GEIGY Drew Award in Biomedical Research, Humboldt Research Award, Wolf Prize in Chemistry, California Scientist of the Year Award, Coley Award for Distinguished Research in Basic and Tumor Immunology, the Windaus-Medial/Award, President’s Medal, University of California, Paul Ehrlich-and Ludwig Darmstaedter Prize, Frankfurt, Germany, AAAS Fellow, DART/NYU Biotechnology Achievement Award in Basic Biotechnology, New York, NY, Distinguished Visiting Scientist at IBM T.J. Watson Research Center, New York, Ulysses Medal, University College Dublin, Belfield, Dublin Ireland; Honorary Doctorate of Medicine, Karolinska Institute, Honorary Doctorate of Science Award, Technion-Israel Institute of Technology, Doctor of Science, Northwestern University, Evanston, IL, Honorary Doctorate Degree, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, Beer-Sheva, Israel, Honorary Doctorate in Humane Letters from Florida Atlantic University, Boca Raton, Florida, Honorary Degree of Doctor of Science, honoris causa, Oxford University, Oxford, United Kingdom. Honorary Degree of Doctor of Science, honoris causa, University College Dublin, Belfield, Dublin Ireland and Honorary Degree of Doctor of Science, University of Warwick, Coventry, United Kingdom