August when Leon R. Kass, SB'58, MD'62, the Addie Clark Harding
professor in the Committee on Social Thought and the College,
was appointed chair of President George W. Bush's Council on Bioethics,
Kass told the Magazine that his first challenge would be
finding intelligent people with open minds to join him on the
council ("Chicago Journal," October/01). He has met
the challenge-at least in part-by turning to other Chicago alumni.
the 17 experts named to the panel on January 16 were three U
of C alumni. Janet D. Rowley, PhB'45, SB'46, MD'48, the Blum-Riese
distinguished service professor of medicine, molecular genetics
and cell biology, and human genetics at Chicago's Pritzker School
of Medicine, known for her studies of chromosome abnormalities
in human leukemia and lymphoma, will contribute a researcher's
"insider" experience. Meanwhile, Mary Ann Glendon,
AB'59, JD'61, MCL'63, the Learned Hand professor of law at Harvard
University and one of the "Fifty Most Influential Women
Lawyers in America" in 1998 according to the National
Law Journal, hopes to compare how other countries address
bioethical issues. And James Q. Wilson, AM'57, PhD'59, the James
A. Collins professor emeritus of management and public policy
at the University of California-Los Angeles, will consider bioethics
from a public-policy perspective. Wilson and Kass coauthored
The Ethics of Human Cloning (AEI Press, 1998).
council assists the president and Congress in making decisions
on a wide range of controversial issues, including stem cell
research. The council first met on January 17 to discuss human
cloning, a subject on which Kass has written extensively.
meetings are under way, "the biggest challenge," as
Kass sees it, has yet to be met: the council must "find
ways of characterizing the complicated moral and human meaning
of biomedical advance."