Professor Amos B. Smith, III was honored with The Order of the Rising Sun, Gold Rays with Neck Ribbon from Government of Japan
November 3, 2004 Amos B. Smith, III, Rhodes-Thompson Professor of Chemistry and Member of the Monell Chemical Senses Center at the University of Pennsylvania, was honored with The Order of the Rising Sun, Gold Rays with Neck Ribbon for his outstanding contributions to the training and education of Japanese scientists and for the promotion of academic exchange between Japan and the United States.
Professor Smith obtained his early education at Bucknell University, receiving Bucknell’s first B.S.-M.S. combined degree in 1966-1967. After a year in Medical School at the University of Pennsylvania, he completed a Ph.D degree in Life Sciences at the Rockefeller University in 1972. In 1973, after a year as a Research Associate at Rockefeller, he joined the Department of Chemistry and the Monell Chemical Senses Center at the University of Pennsylvania. Currently he is the Rhodes-Thompson Professor of Chemistry and Member of the Monell Chemical Senses Center. From 1988 to 1996, he served as the Chairman of the Department of Chemistry. Professor Smith is also a Visiting Director and Honorary Member of the Kitasato Institute in Tokyo, Japan. In 1998 Professor Smith became the first Editor-in-Chief of a new American Chemical Society journal, Organic Letters, and in 2003 he was awarded the Yamada Prize from the Japan Research Foundation for Optically Active Compounds, Tokyo, Japan.
Professor Smith’s research encompasses synthetic chemistry, bioorganic chemistry, and materials science. He is internationally known in particular for his outstanding achievements in the area of total synthesis of architecturally complex natural products having important bio-regulatory properties. To date, he and his coworker have published more than 470 publications in these areas.
Over the course of 20 years, Professor Smith has accepted approximately 50 Japanese scientists into his laboratory at the University of Pennsylvania, where he has taught and fostered them in the broad area of chemistry. Professor Smith has also contributed significantly to academic exchanges between Japan and the U.S. by delivering lectures at Japanese universities and pharmaceutical companies. He visits Japan almost annually.