Mark Hegsted (2014-2009)

Mark Hegsted, who later became administrator of human nutrition in the U.S. Department of Agriculture, was sure he didn’t want to be a farmer. “The general direction of my career was probably determined during my first few days at the University of Idaho,” he wrote. “I had been awarded a Union Pacific Scholarship that paid a small amount of money—I do not recall how much—and a roundtrip ticket to the University. This seemed too good to pass up, so I arrived at the University with $75 in my pocket. I had little idea of the fields available, but I was sure I did not want to be a farmer.”

Hegsted graduated from the University of Idaho in 1936, earned a Ph.D. in biochemistry from the University of Wisconsin in 1940, and worked as a research chemist at the Abbott Laboratories in Chicago. He then joined the newly established Department of Nutrition at the Harvard School of Public Health where in 1962, he became a professor of nutrition. In 1978, he was named administrator of human nutrition in the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

From: Hegsted DM:From chick nutrition to nutrition policy. Annu Rev Nutr. 2000;20:1-19. (full-text)

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