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Diversity/Inclusivity/Career Development

Thoru Pederson has long advocated in these areas, including serving for many years on the Minority Affairs Committee of the American Society for Cell Biology.  He recently published a widely acclaimed editorial on a road name change, from that of a racist (Pederson T. De-naming and renaming schools and buildings, and even a little road: the challenges of getting it right. FASEB J. 2019. 33: 11617-11618, 2019; doi.10.1096/fj.19021.ufm).   Subsequently, he has been part of a coalition that has now succeeded in having the town rename this road for a distinguished African-American cell biologist and educator, Jewel Plummer Cobb.  The new sign will go up in June, 2021 and Thoru will speak at a related event.

Following a suite of federal allegations against certain Chinese-American biomedical scientists, Thoru wrote a strong editorial against what he believed was a stereotype-based perspective that was being taken (Pederson T.  "Exporting" American scientific discoveries: refletions and circumspection. FASEB J. 2019. 33: 7793-7795; doi.10.1096/fj.190701ufm).   

Thoru has long been dedicated to career development.  From 2006-2015 he wrote the monthly "Dear Labby" column in the American Society for Cell Biology newsletter, with some of  columns dealing with harassment encountered by students or post-docs who wrote (anonymously of course) as well as other career development issues.  He continues these career development efforts on many fronts, one of which was his  publication on "the Imposter Syndrome" (Pederson T. A 20 year encounter with the imposter syndrome. Mol. Biol. Cell. 2020. 31:2509-2510; doi.10.1091/mbc.E20-06-0376.  In another article he lauded the career development efforts by professional societies (Pederson, T. Inclusivity, mentoring and careers in the life sciences: societies add to the collaborative. FASEB J. 2019. 33: 1523-1524. doi:10.1096/fj.190201ufm).