Congratulations, Harry!

Join the entire UC Santa Cruz community in congratulating Professor Noller on receiving the Breakthrough Prize for Life Sciences – a monumental achievement!

Congratulations! What wonderful recognition for your perseverance and insight that has led to monumental discoveries that will continue to impact many future generations of scientists to come. I loved learning about your passion for jazz and race cars too!

Carey Odden, UCSC staff, previous research accountant for Harry

Congratulations, Professor Noller. We are so fortunate that you chose to invest your entire career at UC Santa Cruz. Here in the Bay Area, we are surrounded by thoughtful risk takers like you, who make such a significant difference in so many fields. Thank you for being drawn to or liking as you say, “interesting things”, including music. The fact that you are such an accomplished jazz saxophonist is an inspiration and must certainly add special dimension to your life, research and teaching. I’m glad to have ‘found’ Santa Cruz as a staffer two years ago after 22 years living in the Bay Area.

Joe Schillaci, University Relations

My sincere congrats!

Molly Webb, Artist, Class of 1980

Congratulations Harry from Atlanta. You were always an inspiration to me and the students I worked with. If ever in the ATL look me up. Would love to see you.

Bernice Frankl, Friend

Dear Harry, I am always so pleased when you are recognized for your work. I doubt that many of those who read of this award know what an inspiring mentor you have been as well.

Nora Chapman, Ph.D.

Nora Chapman, Retired professor of microbiology and former student of Harry's

Congratulations Mr. Noller. You are an inspiring example of curiosity and persistence. We all celebrate your achievement and are proud that you are a part of our campus community.

John Rembao, Assistant Director Career Center

As a staff member very distant from your work and your department, I congratulate you and want you to know it is inspirational for someone like me to hear of your remarkable success and to know it was all done right here at UCSC. It makes me proud to be part of such a great institution for research!

Barbara Lorimer, Executive Assistant

Hi Professor Noller,

Thank you for your decades of research to help humanity. Also I appreciate you tutoring me on tenor saxophone in the fall of ‘69.

Paul Boyer, A student in 1969 College 5 Jazz Band Core Class

Congradulations Professor Noller on this award and for following the science wherever it led, without being thwarted by criticism.

Jim Dougherty, Principal Auditor

Sending you warm, sincere congratulatory thoughts Professor Noller! I love reading about all the research being done at UCSC and so proud of your accomplishments. Way to stick it out all these years. You are an inspiration!

Jen Buell, Optometrist and Alumnus of UCSC

Congratulations to a great teacher and the honor you have brought UCSC. I remember the word of the day was ribosomes and years later it is still ribosomes. I clearly remember your direct focus and steadfastness with this subject and your absolute belief you were on the right path and you were right. That took great intuition and brightness. Congratulations and hooray!

Mitch Halpern, Student, 1977

Wow! So happy your work has been widely appreciated and richly rewarded.

The late 60s, early 70s were a magical time for UCSC’s biology and chemistry departments. We students really did appreciate your relative youth and enthusiasm for science. You guys had a huge impact on the direction of my life!

Thanks and congratulations!

Irene Chennell, MD now, but UCSC student '68 - '72

Dear Harry – I was delighted with the news that your 50 years of research on ribosome structure have been appropriately rewarded. With your contributions, we have a pretty good understanding of how ribosomes work. Now you can go on to the next fundamental question: How did they originate some four billion years ago?

Dave Deamer, Research professor, Biomolecular Engineering


Well deserved! Wear your Italian shoes for the ceremony, Zuckerberg will be impressed. ;-)

Was good seeing you in SC this year, try to make it to Innsbruck if you can, now that you are a celebrity, we will fly you in first class of course!

Best wishes, Alex

Alex H, Postdoc

Bravo Bravissimo Harry,

I am always proud of you. Working with you were the days of my dream.

Alexey Kopylov, Professor, Post Doc UCSC in 1979

Congratulations Harry!

I cherish every one of our interaction back in the eighties and regret there were too few. I feel very proud, happy for you and very privileged to have had you as one of my Professors.

:-) Vanya

Vanya Loroch, A graduate student in the lab next door

Congratulations!! Glad to see that your work has been recognized.

Omar Zepeda, Past student

Makes be proud to be a Slug!

Tara Loughran , UCSC Student

Congratulations, Harry! I’m so glad that you were given this honor, one that you well deserve. Pondering your research has made me wonder if you might be willing to talk with me for less than an hour about some ideas I recently have had regarding the mechanism of evolution, and that I want to include in a book that I’ve been writing. If you would be up for it, you could call me, and we can set up a time and place to talk. Again – great work!!!

Frank Andrews

Frank Andrews, A fellow emeritus professor

Just wanted to say congratulations on your achievement Harry. Love the amount of devotion that goes into your research!

Peter Tran, Admirer

It is an honor to be currently studying your discoveries as an undergraduate student on campus. Your contributions pave the path of my future work/research as well as so many others, congratulations!

Nicholas Hill, Undergraduate in Bioinformatics, UCSC

Harry, congratulations. You’re a great professor and researcher. Working for you on XRNA for 2 years was more interesting than the 35 years I worked in the Silicon Valley. Thanks for your contribution to molecular biology and thanks for making me pronounce tryptophan correctly :)

Howard Florio, Past biochemistry student, dry lab student worker 92-94

Congratulations Harry! from another neighbor…

Carol Harper, Neighbor


Dianne Shortall, Harry's Next Door Neighbor

Congratulations on yet another award that recognizes Professor Harry Noller’s contributions to science. I was so fortunate to be one of the early stage graduate students with Noller. Carl Woese told me several times in the 1980’s, when Harry was already recognized as the leader in the ribosome/RNA field, “Harry is destined to become more famous”. Carl was also envious of Harry’s music and artistic talents (in addition to his science), which was the basis for Carl to say - “if I didn’t like him I would hate him”.

Robin Gutell, Professor at the University of Texas at Austin, Ph.D graduate student with Professor Noller.

Congratulations for persistently and successfully swimming against the tide! A great model.

Marc Reinig, Admirer

Harry deciphered the Ribosome and thousands of other mysteries of RNA. When everyone else thought that RNA was unimportant, Harry persevered.

Harry continues to inspire my work in championing the important of RNA expression as the key to understanding Cancer’s dysfunctional impact and ultimate remedy.

The Breakthrough Prize is extremely well deserved and reminds us that the work is great.

Ted Goldstein, Harry's student, Colleague and Adjunct Professor Biomolecular Engineering

Congratulations! What a fantastic honor, and so very well deserved!

Faye Crosby, Distinguished Professor of Psychology

Congratulations Harry! Working in your lab was one of the high points of my life in science. And it was also a pleasure.

Ludwika Zimniak, former postdoc

Harry, Hearty congratulations! A beautiful recognition for your beautiful contributions.

Gary Silberstein, Research Biologist, ret.

Hello Professor Noller,

I only just learned about you and your discovery. While I don’t have any direct relationship with you, your story spoke to me on a very personal level. It’s characteristic of a Great Thinker to focus only on what matters while ignoring what doesn’t, recognizing hidden truths while no one else did; it’s the same type of courage that Albert Einstein had!

You’re an inspiration to students like me, I congratulate you and thank you for your discovery!

Shaan Saini, Undergraduate Student of Computer Science, UC Santa Cruz

Bravo Harry! What a wonderful personalaccomplishment - and outstanding recognition of the nurturing environment that is UCSC.

James McClintock, Undergrad in biological sciences at UCSC 1973-78; Postdoc 84-87

Congratulations Dr. NOLLER Your work on the ribosome is epiphenomenal!! You are a genius. Thank you for all your scientific contributions to humanity

Dora Rodrigue, health inspector, past student

Its one thing to discover a new truth or to envision a better version of the world. It’s something else altogether to convince us all to stop and take a look and to supersede the previously agreed-upon understanding or status quo. Congratulations, Professor Noller! Cheers to finding a quiet place to cultivate better truths.

Kevin Neuburger, UCSC Alumnus

Dear Harry,

It was always a privilege to write about your research as a member of the campus news office, dating back to 1989. I vividly recall devouring the relevant chapter of Campbell’s Biology before our first interview so that I wouldn’t completely fall on my face with naïve questions. You always were unfailingly gracious, patient, and clear. Congratulations on this truly thrilling honor, and thank you for all you have done over the years to help draw positive attention to the research enterprise at UCSC.

My best, Rob

Rob Irion, Director, Science Communication Program

I remember your class and your joy in science better than many things in my college years. thank you for imparting that love of logic and discovery, and congratulations!!

beth gleghorn, he taught me in a small class on crystallography

Warmest congratulations on this richly deserved honor for your many years of outstanding research!

John Faulkner, Emeritus Professor, Astronomy & Astrophysics

Harry: Congratulations! Great accomplishments and a great honor.

Reed and LIsa Flocks, Neighbor

Congratulations and thank you for your persistence and inspiration!

Kathleen Bloom, Parent of two UCSC students

Congratulations!!! You are so inspiring. Thank you for your contribution to science.

Adriana Lopez, Cool RNA People on the Fourth Floor of Sinsheimer

Congratulations, Harry! Your enthusiasm for your work is contagious and has certainly influenced my career as an educator. I’m so proud to have been a student of yours.

Christy Hutton (formerly Emigh), Former student

Congratulations Harry! I am continually impressed by the creative minds at UCSC and you exemplify all that it encourages. Even though you have made amazing breakthrough strides in the complex world of Molecular Biology, it is the character you have shown that is universally important regardless of ones endeavors. Your steadfast perseverance, combined with continual “non-traditional thinking”, passion for your field, working in an environment that fosters your research, and maintaining the child-like wonder on a weekly basis, is what has brought you to this moment. Thank you!

Lisa Smith, UCSC Parent to new Freshman student

Thank you for all your work Dr. Noller. I hope to be able to contribute as much new knowledge to our understanding of life as you have.

Kurt Walsh, Biomolecular Engineering Undergraduate

Dear Prof. Noller,

Judging from the award info and from the comments that precede mine, thank you for the role model you apparently have always been, and are now receiving world-class recognition for. Your respect for ribosomes, perseverance, and your concern for the world, gives inspiration for my daughter, her peers here at UCSC, and for students everywhere who have dreams of living a really contributive life.

Congratulations, and thank you!

Koren Ikeda-Takata, Parent of UC Santa Cruz Undergrad Catherine Takata

Congratulations Professor Emeritus Noller. I was impressed with your intensity of purpose over 40 years ago and you have remained in my head since, as I have read your papers and have seen your body of work cited in textbooks and journals.

Indeed, you inspire good people daily because you are a kind man as well as an estimable scientist. You have been a role model for your contributions to the quality of life for all scientists. I am pleased and honored to have learned from you.

Marvelous recognition!

Arthur Nonomura, Senior Vice President, Brandt iHammer; 1973 undergraduate student of Harry Noller

Wonderful news, CONGRATULATIONS!!!

Sofie Salama, colleague

Congratulations Harry. You deserve this wonderful prize for your significant contributions to science. I demonstrate the ribosome the right way every semester thanks to you.

Alicia Steinhardt, Biology Instructor

Dear Harry,

Hearty congratulations to you from George and me. We have always treasured your wisdom, wit, and collegiality. It is good to see your research accomplishments being recognized. You are an inspiration!

With affection, Martha and George

Martha Zuniga, Colleague in MCD Biology

Congratulations Dr. Noller!

Oscar Gantes, UCSC, Class of 2004


I’m inspired and thrilled by your work, and I couldn’t be happier that you’re being recognized for it.

You give hope to people who think that their work won’t go anywhere or will just be rejected. Thank you for your contribution to the scientific community, and all the best to you!

Max Van Gelder, Undergraduate

Congratulations Harry. This is excellent news and a very well deserved recognition of your ongoing outstanding work.

Dave Kliger, another emeritus prof

Congratulations, so proud and grateful for your contribution, Thank you!

Kim Vaadia, Alumni

Dear Harry,

Congratulations for the outstanding prize that you deserve it gratefully. Indeed research on proteins, molecular structure, antibiotics and their interactions are the keys for current/future drugs. Thank you for giving us the lesson not giving up on our dreams and goals.

We are so proud of you Harry!

Parva Zareitalabad, Postdoctoral scholar at department of biomolecular engineering at UCSC

Congratulations on winning the Breakthrough Prize. As someone who wants to pursue a career as a researcher in Robotics, it is very inspiring to read about you. It gives me a lot of motivation to keep on going down this road. Thank you so much for your work.

Shaurya Chopra, Student

It is about time Harry – good to see that what goes around on the plus side can come around on the plus side as well. You deserve every one of those 3 x 10^8 pennies! And more!

Thanks for all the generosity you have shown to your junior colleagues and students – your commitment to the next generation of scientists really sets you apart.

Manny Ares, FOH

Most excellent.

Russ Flegal, Colleague

Awesome, Dude! You da man! XO

Ellen Chinn, Former MCD grad student

All that science AND looking dapper and youthful when getting out of the M3 on top of the Core West Parking structure. A true inspiration.

Dimitris Achlioptas, Professor

Sincere congratulations. I’m proud to be a slug and to have been one of your students.

Gregory Frank, UCSC Alumnus

Congratulations, Harry! This is terrific news.

John Weber, Founding Director, Institute of the Arts and Sciences, UC Santa Cruz Arts Division

So pleased to see this very long-deserved recognition of your huge contributions to understanding the ribosome: Congratulations!

Rebecca Braslau, Chemistry Professor

Congratulations Professor Noller!

It must feel amazing to have made such an amazing breakthrough - all your years of hard work and dedication have paid off nicely. I’m studying biochemistry and molecular biology and in the future I am interested in working in a field related to cellular and developmental biology so hearing about this breakthrough is very exciting for me. Although I do not know you personally, I look up to you and hope to one day achieve an honor as well.

Jeet Kaur, An interested student

I am in a phase of learning about UCSC, as my son is new to school. I am blown away to learn about the advances being made by minds such as yours. Swimming against the tide for 50 years may have been very lonely, but it must be rewarding to gain public acknowledgement for a life’s work. THANK YOU on behalf of all of us that will benefit from your research and dedication!

Maureen Hurley, Mom to new freshmen Political Science Major

Congratulations on your dedication and commitment to science and research. You are so deserving of this recognition for your body of work. Persistence in the face of research challenges is how great discoveries are made.

Laurie Shaker-Irwin, Clinical Research-UCLA

Congratulations, your research has and will continue to bring about great change in the world, and your lifetime of work and achievement is a testiment to the spirits of inquiry and scientific discovery. Your award is well-deserved and thank you for all you’ve done.

John Runnberg, Student


Special congratulations to you for this wonderful recognition of your research accomplishments. From the Orindians and Bob Long, to nearly a half a century of research, teaching and mentorship at UCSC- its been an impressive career with many wonderful things to show for your dedication… and we’ve been able to share that time here.

with warmest regards and congratulations,


Gary Griggs, colleague for 48 years

Harry Nice accolade and glad to see such a great recognition of your tireless work at UCSC.. I know that you are taking some time off to enjoy some great burgundy wines during in the coming days of celebration. Phil

Phil Crews, Prof of Chemistry

Congratulations on all of the success you’ve achieved. A prestigious reward for some incredible strives forward in the field. You’re an inspiration to all Banana Slugs!

Greg Durham, Student

Great news and a well-deserved honor. I remember many years ago when you told me of your plans for future work on RNA. Now much of it is in the past but there is still more to come.

Donald Wittman, Professor of Economics

Harry, you’ve been a research powerhouse for decades, and your discoveries benefit us all. Thank you, and congratulations, Dr. Ribosome!

George Blumenthal, Chancellor, UC Santa Cruz

Congratulations on this tremendous and well-deserved achievement!

Your relentless pursuit of knowledge and your endless curiosity have had profound scientific, philosophical and practical impact — not only on our understanding of the world around (and within) us, but also on practical applications for human health. You have brought us closer to understanding the structure and function of ribosomes, the molecular mechanisms underlying protein synthesis, and the origins of life itself.

You have inspired – and continue to inspire – generations of young scientists to not shy away from tough scientific questions, but rather to be intrigued by life’s mysteries, to dig deep for answers, to not settle for “good enough.”

Alexander L. Wolf, Dean, Baskin School of Engineering

Dear Harry,

Congratulations on receiving the Breakthrough Prize! What a fitting honor for a lifetime of groundbreaking discovery.

Your work exemplifies “the rich tradition of non-traditional thinking” that we so value here at UC Santa Cruz. You are a welcoming beacon for the many scholars who will follow in your footsteps.

Thank you for making us proud to be associated with this great campus!

Keith Brant, Vice Chancellor, University Relations - UC Santa Cruz

Amazing recognition for amazing scientific contributions. This is well served recognition for changing our understanding of molecular biology and perhaps how life arose on Earth.

Congratulations Harry!

Paul Koch, Dean of Physical and Biological Sciences, UC Santa Cruz