Western Md. gives Welliver honorary degree

June 14, 1998

Dr. Daniel Welliver has spent a lot of time at Western Maryland College, much of it as the campus physician.

Welliver is retiring from WMC this year, and the college recently awarded him with an honorary doctorate, one of its most prestigious awards.

Doctor of humane letters also was probably one of the few awards he hadn't earned. In 1984, he was named Alumnus of the Year, and in 1990 was given the Trustee Alumni Award.

"You have daily shown that the healing arts can still be ministered with heart, that a comforting bedside manner is still in style, and that the family physician can still be the family friend as well," Robert H. Chambers, president of the college, said in his testimony.

Welliver came to Western Maryland long before he wore a stethoscope, and before his days as a student. As the son of a Methodist clergyman assigned to the institution, he grew up in the campus' Forlines House, now home of the college's administration and finance division.

He earned his bachelor's degree here in 1950 and a medical degree from the University of Maryland. After completing his internship at University of Michigan and two years of active duty in the Naval Reserve, Welliver returned to Westminster to establish himself in private practice.

He also returned to his alma mater, serving as campus physician and team doctor for the Green Terror athletic teams. He also established himself as a respected team physician for many of the area high school teams.

Welliver served 24 years as the medical director of Westminster Nursing and Rehabilitative Center, and was appointed to the Associates Program of the University of Maryland School of Medicine.

Chemistry professor earns Zepp teaching award

Chemistry Professor Richard H. Smith Jr. recently received the 1998 Ira G. Zepp Distinguished Teaching Award at Western Maryland College.

The recipient of the award, established by the Sigma Sigma Tau sorority, is chosen by WMC's juniors and seniors.

Smith, who was named Maryland Chemist of the Year by the state section of the American Chemical Society in 1995, has a bachelor's degree in chemistry from Washington College and a doctorate in organic chemistry from the University of Virginia.

After a year of postdoctoral studies at Ohio State University, he joined the faculty of Western Maryland and has been a professor since 1985.

Smith was a 1993 recipient of a Camille and Henry Dreyfus Scholar-Fellow grant and served for two years as a mentor and tutor to a postdoctoral student in chemical science who joined the college's faculty.

That year, Smith received a National Science Foundation grant to support the incorporation of molecular modeling for the four years of the chemistry curriculum to enhance students' understanding of the chemical and physical properties of molecules.

Since 1979, Smith has been a visiting scientist at the National Cancer Institute's Frederick Cancer Research and Development Center, where he and his undergraduate colleagues have performed research on the chemistry of triazines as it relates to the development of new anti-tumor drugs.

Three alumni and graduating seniors also received awards at the annual ceremony held last month before commencement.

Alumni career and service achievement awards were given by the college Board of Trustees to Dr. William J. Holloway, Class of 1946, director of the infectious disease research laboratory at Christiana Care Health Services in Wilmington, Del.; and to the husband-wife team of geneticists, Alexander Frederick Wilson and Joan Bailey Wilson, both of the Class of 1975.

Holloway practiced internal medicine for 34 years at Wilmington's Brandywine Medical Center. He brought research programs to the center, developed antibiotics, authored papers in major medical journals and lectured colleagues around the world.

He also created the nation's premier Annual Infectious Disease Symposium, held in Wilmington for 34 years. He retired from private practice in 1989 to assume a full-time directorship of the infectious disease lab at the medical center.

Last year, Holloway was elected a master in the American College of Physicians, one of medicine's most coveted awards.

Both the Wilsons work at the Center for Inherited Disease Research in Baltimore, a branch of the National Institutes of Health's National Human Genome Research Institute. He is the acting chief of the genometrics section, and she is the acting chief of the statistical genetics section.

The Wilsons have studied and worked together since they met during their senior year at WMC. Both specialize in using computers, complex statistics and data from family histories to search for genes in diseases thought to be hereditary.

He has mapped genes for a form of congenital cataract and an enzyme involved in dopamine metabolism, and is working to find genes for hypertension and cardiovascular disease.

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