Patrick, Ruth (1907–)

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Patrick, Ruth (1907–)

American botanist and ecologist. Born Ruth Patrick, Nov 26, 1907, in Topeka, Kansas; dau. of Frank Patrick (lawyer) and Myrtle (Jetmore) Patrick; graduate of Coker College in SC, 1929; University of Virginia, MS in botany, 1931, PhD, 1934; m. Charles Hodge IV, 1931; Lewis H. Van Dusen Jr., 1995; children: (1st m.) 1.

Cofounder of field of limnology, founded Estuarine Laboratory on Chesapeake Bay, MD, to study coastal ecosystems (1947); created (1947), directed (1947–73), and became curator of the limnology department, formerly Environmental Research Division, called The Patrick Center for Environmental Research (1983); served as board of trustees chair (1973–76) and later honorary chair of Academy of Natural Sciences in Philadelphia; took post of adjunct professor at University of Pennsylvania (1970); wrote Diatoms of the United States (1966) with Charles Reimer; proved that diatoms indicate freshwater pollution levels, and invented diatometer; advocated study of ecological communities rather than focusing on individual species to evaluate pollution levels; became 1st woman and 1st environmentalist to serve on board of du Pont; elected to National Academy of Sciences (1970); served as president of American Society of Naturalists (1975–77); created Rivers of the United States, a multivolume series (1994). Received Botanical Society of America's Award of Merit (1971), American Philosophical Society's Benjamin Franklin Award (1993), American Society of Limnology and Oceanography's Lifetime Achievement Award (1996) and National Medal of Science (1996).

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Patrick, Ruth (1907–)

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