PHILADELPHIA, Oct. 14, 2015 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- On October 9, 2015, the board of directors of the Chemical Heritage Foundation (CHF) in Philadelphia approved a merger with the Life Sciences Foundation (LSF) of San Francisco. On October 11, the Life Sciences Foundation board approved the same plan. The combined organization will cover the history of the life sciences and biotechnology together with the history of the chemical sciences and engineering—two of the largest and most significant branches of modern science and technology.
Speaking of the merger, Robert Langer, David H. Koch Institute Professor at MIT, said, "These two outstanding organizations both deal with the wonderful history of their complementary fields. As a member of the CHF board and as a longstanding member of the biotechnology community, I couldn't be more pleased to see these two terrific organizations come together."
The two institutions share a founder, Arnold Thackray, as well as missions to collect and share the history of science and technology. CHF has traditionally focused on the whole of the chemical sciences and technologies, while LSF has been more targeted in its studies, concentrating on the history of the last forty years of work in biotechnology. Approximately two years ago, leadership in both organizations expressed an interest in working together more closely and talks between the two began. By spring 2015 it was clear that plans and ambitions on both sides were remarkably similar. Rather than build capacity in two separate institutions, leadership on both sides decided to bring the two organizations together.
The combined organization will maintain many of the programs now undertaken independently by each institution and continue to explore science and its interaction with engineering, technology, and industry. "That interaction is a driving force in modern society and culture. These sciences and technologies surround us and shape our daily experiences. Understanding their evolution, their cultural role, and their importance for our future will ground the combined organization's efforts. Together, CHF and LSF will work to share the history of science both with those who participate in the sciences and the broader public whose everyday life is affected by these disciplines," stated Laurie Landeau, chair of CHF's board of directors. Carl B. Feldbaum, chair of LSF's board of directors, adds, "The alignment of missions and easy articulation of a shared vision make this a winning combination. By marrying these two organizations, we will be even better equipped to record and communicate biotech's extraordinary development to future generations. I believe this merger is in the best interests of LSF and the life sciences community, and will significantly advance our efforts to capture and share biotech's increasingly significant history."
The combined organization will be headquartered in Philadelphia, the site of CHF's extensive library and museum, but maintain offices and staff in the Bay Area, where LSF has been headquartered since its founding in 2010. The merger is expected to close in November.
About the Chemical Heritage Foundation (CHF): CHF fosters dialogue on science and technology in society. Our staff and fellows study the past in order to understand the present and inform the future. We focus on matter and materials and their effects on our modern world in territory ranging from the physical sciences and industries, through the chemical sciences and engineering, to the life sciences and technologies. We collect, preserve, and exhibit historical artifacts; engage communities of scientists and engineers; and tell the stories of the people behind breakthroughs and innovations. www.chemheritage.org
About the Life Sciences Foundation (LSF): LSF focuses on educating and inspiring curious minds with the history and continuing significance of biotechnology. The foundation collects, preserves, and shares firsthand information about the people, organizations and discoveries that define biotechnology. We focus on the unique opportunity to capture these stories in first-hand accounts from the people who not only witnessed – but often made – history themselves. www.biotechhistory.org
Shelley Wilks Geehr
Chemical Heritage Foundation
Life Sciences Foundation
SOURCE Chemical Heritage Foundation