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David T. Gibson

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David T. Gibson (age 76) of Concord, MA, died July 24, 2014. David was a beloved husband, father, grandfather, a gifted scientist, teacher and lecturer, and a dear friend to so many. He loved to tell a good story and had a wonderful sense of humor and a deep laugh. He took great joy in mentoring his graduate students and postdoctoral fellows, many of whom have gone on to their own distinguished scientific careers in academia and industry. When not engaged in his scientific work, he enjoyed fishing, birding, gardening, and spending time with his family. He will be remembered for his brilliant mind, strength of character, gentle nature, goodness of heart, and indomitable spirit. David Gibson was born in Wakefield, England in 1938, the son of Thomas Henry and Mary Ann Gibson. He grew up on the northeast coast of Yorkshire, U.K. He emigrated with his wife, Janet, to the USA in 1964 after receiving his B.Sc. and Ph.D. degrees in biochemistry at the University of Leeds. David had a long and distinguished career in the field of biocatalysis and microbiology. In 1967, after postdoctoral studies at the universities of Wisconsin and Illinois, he joined the Department of Microbiology at The University of Texas at Austin, rising to the positions of Professor and Director of The Center for Applied Microbiology. In 1988 he moved to The University of Iowa to take the first endowed Edwin B. Green Chair in Biocatalysis and Microbiology, a position he held in the Department of Microbiology until his retirement in 2004. Davids research focused on the mechanisms used by diverse microorganisms to degrade aromatic hydrocarbons and environmental pollutants. The results emanating from his laboratory provided the scientific foundations for the development of the fields of bioremediation and biocatalysis. His work is chronicled in the more than 200 publications emanating from his laboratory. David was elected as a Fellow in the American Academy for Microbiology and the American Association for the Advancement of Science. In 1996 the American Society for Microbiology honored David by devoting a seminar and two sessions to his work at the annual meeting of the society in New Orleans. The following year he received The American Society for Microbiology's Procter & Gamble Award in Applied and Environmental Microbiology. He was elected to The National Academy of Sciences in 2005. He also served on numerous scientific editorial boards and advisory panels. After retiring from the University of Iowa, David moved to Concord, MA. He is survived by his dearly beloved wife Janet of 51 years, his daughters, Karen Gibson of Washington DC and Christine Ruddy and husband Kevin of Needham MA and grandchildren Elizabeth, Nathan and Nicholas. His younger brothers John and Philip currently reside in England and Laos respectively. A memorial celebration for family and friends will be scheduled at a later date. Arrangements are under the care of Charles W. Dee and Susan M. Dee, Dee Funeral Home of Concord. For more information, or to share a remembrance or send a condolence please visit www.deefuneralhome.com.

Published in The Concord Journal from July 26 to Aug. 2, 2014
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