AWARD OF MERIT RECIPIENT FOR 1987
In recognition of his extended meritorious service to the advancement of science in Oklahoma, Dr. Howard W. Larsh received the 1987 Oklahoma Academy of Science Scientist of the year award.
Dr. Larsh, a native of Illinois, began his educational career at McKendree College, Lebanon, Illinois, receiving the B.A. degree in biology in 1936. He then studied medical mycology with Dr. C. W. Dodge at Washington University in St. Louis. He completed his M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in 1938 and 1941 respectively at the University of Illinois.
He began his teaching career at the University of Oklahoma in 1941 and retired in 1984 as George Lynn Cross Research Professor of Microbiology.
In 1946 he did postdoctoral work in medical mycology with Dr. Norman F. Conant at Duke University, receiving Meritorious Recognition in this area of medical specialization.
During his tenure at the University of Oklahoma he served as Chairman of the Department of Plant Science from 1945 through 1963. In 1962 he was selected as George Lynn Cross Research Professor of Microbiology. In 1966 he returned to the Chairmanship of the Department of Botany and Microbiology and served through 1976.
In addition to teaching and research at the University of Oklahoma, Dr. Larsh served as consultant in medical mycology and immunology at several medical institutions in Oklahoma and Texas. He was hospital laboratory director at the Missouri State Chest Hospital until his retirement in June 1986. Dr. Larsh was awarded the Certificate of Appreciation for his devoted and invaluable services by the Missouri Division of Health in 1983.
Early in the manned spacecraft program (NASA) Dr. Larsh acted as a consultant in bacteriology and mycology in the Medical Division of this organization. Along with Drs. Bass and Berry his duties were to monitor the astronauts' physical condition prior to and after flight. In addition, items returned from the moon were evaluated.
Dr. Larsh has served on many national and international committees and presented research papers at scientific meetings. He was Editor-in-chief, Sabouraudia, Journal for International Society for Human and Animal Mycology, 1975-1979.
In 1977 he was the recipient of the Rhoda Benham award for outstanding contributions in the field of medical mycology.
Dr. Larsh has published extensively in plant pathology and medical mycology with special emphasis on the disease called histoplasmosis. He has written numerous reviews and 12 chapters in specialized scientific books. Results of his research have appeared in over 200 abstracts and articles.
Nearly 100 students have completed masters' and doctoral degrees and postdoctorate training in his medical mycological programs.
Since his retirement from the University of Oklahoma and the Missouri State Chest Hospital, Dr. Larsh has remained active in teaching and research. He holds an adjunct professorship in the Department of Biology at Southwest Missouri State University and has served on committees of several students completing their master's degree. In addition he is professor of microbiology at Ross School of Veterinary Sciences, St. Kitts, West Indies, where he teaches portions of the microbiology, virology, and immunology courses.
Dr. Larsh served as Assistant Secretary and Treasurer, Secretary-treasurer, Vice president, and President of the Oklahoma Academy of Sciences, 1947-1951.