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David Suzuki

David T. Suzuki (born March 24, 1936) is a Vancouver-born Canadian geneticist who has attained prominence as a science broadcaster and an environmental activist. He received his BA from Amherst College in Massachusetts in 1958 and his PhD. from the University of Chicago in 1961.

Since 1960, Suzuki has been hosting The Nature of Things, one of the earliest shows of the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation after it became national, which has aired in nearly 50 countries worldwide. He was also the host of the PBS series The Secret of Life. He had been the Genetics Professor at the University of British Columbia for 30 years (1969 until his retirement in 2001), and has since been professor emeritus at a university research institute. A Planet for the Taking, a 1985 hit series, averaged over 1.8 million viewers per episode and earned him a United Nations Environment Program Medal in 1987.

Suzuki is the author of over 15 books for both adults and children, including Genethics, Wisdom of the Elders, Inventing the Future, and the Looking At series, a best-selling children's science books.

Early in his research career he studied genetics, using the popular model organism Drosophila melanogaster (fruit flies). To be able to use his initials in naming any new genes he found, he studied Drosophila temperature-sensitive phenotypes (DTS). (As he jokingly noted at a lecture at Johns Hopkins University, the only alternative was darn tough skin.) He gained several international awards for his research into these mutations.

He was presented with the UNESCO Kalinga Prize for science writing in 1968.

A third-generation Japanese-Canadian ("Canadian Sansei"), Suzuki and his family suffered internment in British Columbia during the Second World War since he was six until after the war ended.

Suzuki married Setsuko Joane Sunahara from 1958 to 1965, with three children (Tamiko, Laura, and Troy). He then married Tara Elizabeth Cullis (since 1972) with two daughters: Severn and Sarika Cullis-Suzuki. His Japanese name is Suzuki Takayoshi (鈴木 孝佳 or 孝昌 or 隆喜), but he is always known by his English name to the public, even in Japanese scientific and popular literature (using Romaji).

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