North Central honors Fred Janzen ’85 with Outstanding Alumni Award

Oct 12, 2012

North Central College is honoring Fred Janzen, Ph.D., of Ames, Iowa, with a 2012 Outstanding Alumni Award.

Janzen and five others will be honored during the College’s Homecoming Convocation at 4:15 p.m. Friday, Oct. 26, at North Central College’s Wentz Concert Hall at the Fine Arts Center, 171 E. Chicago Ave., Naperville.

Janzen is widely known in the field of evolutionary biology and herpetology as an outstanding teacher, researcher and author. A professor in the department of ecology, evolution and organismal biology at Iowa State University, he teaches evolutionary genetics, herpetology and field biology courses to advanced undergraduate and graduate students and has mentored 100 postdoctoral fellows. He has authored 135 scientific articles and book chapters since 1986 and holds editorial positions with two academic journals.

Dedicated to global conservation and ecology causes, which resulted in visiting professor posts in Costa Rica and China, Janzen is frequently invited to deliver talks in a variety of academic and science-related settings worldwide and has garnered millions of dollars in grants to support research and education in biology. His numerous awards for teaching and research included recognition as an ADVANCE Professor in 2007 by the National Science Foundation.

Janzen earned a bachelor’s degree in biology from North Central College in 1985 and was inspired to pursue an academic career in zoology by traveling to Arizona and New Mexico for undergraduate research on desert ecology and reptiles. He completed a master’s degree in zoology at Colorado State University, a doctorate in ecology and evolution at the University of Chicago and a postdoctoral fellowship at the University of California-Davis.

Others being honored during Homecoming Convocation are Outstanding Alumni Award recipients Maria Wynne of Chicago, Priscilla Gallagher of Chicago, and Eric McLaren of Aurora; Wall of Witness honoree Wayne Duehn of Arlington, Texas; and Alumni Recognition Award recipient Matthew Brill of Pottstown, Penn.