Science Coalition honors Congressman Charlie Dent for commitment to research

CENTER VALLEY, Pa. --The Science Coalition today (March 19) presented Congressman Charlie Dent, R-Pa., with its Champion of Science Award in recognition of his strong commitment to funding the basic research that keeps the United States and the state of Pennsylvania at the forefront of scientific and medical discovery and technological innovation.

The award, presented to Dent at an event hosted by the Penn State Lehigh Valley campus, recognizes members of Congress whose actions and votes consistently reflect their belief that basic scientific research, conducted at universities and national labs across the country, is essential to the nation’s ability to address pressing issues in health, security, energy and the environment. Dent joins a distinguished group of more than 60 current and former members of Congress who have received this award since 1999.

"In a time of dwindling resources for scientific discovery at all levels, Congressman Dent has been a champion of the type of foundational research that holds the key to solving some of the world's most pressing challenges," said Neil Sharkey, interim vice president for research at Penn State. "The work being done in our institutions today may be tomorrow's breakthroughs in technology, medicine or the environment. Basic research is a fundamental prerequisite to the long-term success of all science, and Congressman Dent has not forgotten the pivotal role it plays."

Penn State is a member of The Science Coalition, a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization of the nation’s leading public and private research universities dedicated to sustaining strong federal funding of basic scientific research as a means to stimulate the economy, spur innovation and drive America’s global competitiveness. Dent is a strong advocate for the scientific research being conducted at Penn State and at universities across the country.

Sharkey, Lehigh Valley Chancellor Ann M. Williams and Associate Vice President of Research and Vice Dean for Research and Graduate Studies at the College of Medicine Dr. Daniel Notterman were on hand to present the award.

“Every day, brilliant, dedicated people in universities, labs and businesses across America are conducting research to cure diseases, extend lifespans, discover new energy sources, develop artificial intelligence and explore our vast universe,” said Dent. “Science isn’t about accepting ‘what is possible.’ The beauty of science is that it causes us to ask ‘What can be possible?’ I am honored that the Science Coalition has chosen to recognize my efforts on behalf of promoting science and scientific research.”

Dent is a member of numerous medical and research caucuses, and has fought for funding and other efforts aimed at the prevention and elimination of illnesses such as chronic viral hepatitis and colorectal cancer. He also has worked hard to raise awareness of the value of the federal government’s investment in research generally. He was one of the first congressional supporters of the Golden Goose Award, which highlights the often unexpected or serendipitous nature of basic scientific research.

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Last Updated March 19, 2014