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George Vlahakis
IU Media Relations

Last modified: Wednesday, October 8, 2003

Bird evolution expert Scott Edwards to give 2003 Holland Lecture

University of Washington biologist Scott Edwards will examine the evolutionary history of birds and their genetic relationship to dinosaurs as part of this year's James P. Holland Memorial Lecture. A memorial portrait of Holland will also be unveiled. The event is free and open to the public.

Edwards' talk, "From Archaeopteryx to Modern Birds: A DNA Trail," will take place Monday (Oct. 13) at 4 p.m. EST in Myers Hall, Room 130, on the Indiana University Bloomington campus.

Edwards is a renowned expert on the phylogenetic history of birds, an exciting field in which genetic and fossil data are amassed in order to build a genealogy of existing bird species reflecting the evolutionary history of all birds, past and present.

The annual James P. Holland Memorial Lecture Series was created in 2000 by the Office of the Vice President for Student Development and Diversity, the Office of Multicultural Affairs and the Department of Biology to recognize the scholarly excellence of minority life scientists. In addition to supporting the lecture series, the Department of Biology and the Office of the Vice President for Research established a graduate fellowship in Holland's honor to support the training of a first-year Ph.D. student from a demographic group under-represented in the life sciences.

James Holland was a devoted teacher and reproductive endocrinologist who helped advance scientists' understanding of how thyroid hormones influence reproductive physiology in women. He was honored with Indiana University's Distinguished Service Award in 1994. In 1997, IUB Chancellor Kenneth Gros Louis created the Chancellor's Medallion and named Holland its first recipient.

Edwards will be available for comment at a reception following the lecture. Inquiries about the event and lecture series should be directed to George Vlahakis at 812-855-0846 or