Oral Histories

Interview of Sidney Roberts

UCLA professor of biological chemistry.
A Scholar for All Seasons: Academic Scientist, Senate Administrator, and National Consultant
Interviews not in a series, part one
UCLA and University of California History
Science, Medicine, and Technology
UCLA Faculty
Biographical Note:
UCLA professor of biological chemistry.
Hathaway, Neil D.
Roberts, Sidney
Supporting Documents:
Records relating to the interview are located in the office of the UCLA Library's Center for Oral History Research.
Regents of the University of California, UCLA Library.
Childhood in Boston; attends Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT); MIT classes and professors; holds National Youth Administration jobs preparing bacteriological media; enters graduate school at Harvard University; interest in growth hormone; Frederick L. Hisaw; studying Cyroptocercus trypanosomes; studies neurotransmitters in lobsters; techniques for culturing bacteria; new methods of measuring blood glucose; the emerging field of endocrinology; antivivisectionists; Maurice B. Visscher's innovations in cardiac surgery; the necessity of animal research; campus oversight committees; collaborates with wife, Clara Szego, on removal of the liver's effect on estrogen activity; works briefly at Sharp and Dohme; becomes an instructor at George Washington University; Hudson Hoagland and Gregory G. Pincus create the Worcester Foundation for Experimental Biology; recruited by Abraham White of Yale University; discovery of antagonism between steroid hormones; Min Chueh Chang of Worcester; research on a birth control pill; Oscar M. Hechter's research on the adrenal cortex; conflicts over credit for discoveries; Roberts's and Szego's work on protein binding to steroid hormones; Edwin J. Cohn's research on blood fractionation techniques; Abraham White's studies of adrenocortical hormones; the controversial relationship between the University of California and the Department of Energy; conducting fractionation studies with electrophoresis; lyophilization techniques; discovery of the hormone thymocin; studying plasma proteins; Alfred E. Wilhelmi's crystallization of growth hormone; the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology; the UCLA Medical Center obtains early funding from the Atomic Energy Project; the impact of the cold war on the University of California; the loyalty oath controversy; Wendell H. Griffith; the University of California's administration of national weapons laboratories; chairs a faculty committee reviewing the campus Atomic Energy Project; committee recommends that the UCLA Atomic Energy Project declassify most of its research; attempts to discredit Roberts before the committee review; conflict surrounding the Department of Radiology; Roberts and Szego receive academic appointments at UCLA; planning UCLA curriculum and laboratories; teaching; designing the Brain Research Institute; serves on the University Welfare Committee; student activism; serves on the Committee on Committees; years on the Privilege and Tenure committee; the Budget Committee; reviewing appointments and promotions; the Grievance and Disciplinary Procedures Committee; the Charges Committee; Chancellor Franklin D. Murphy; Chancellor Charles E. Young; Young's effort to reorganize the College of Fine Arts; the Council on Planning and Budget; Roberts's tenure on the Committee on Educational Policy; creating ethnic studies centers; founding the Institute of Evolutionary and Environmental Biology and the Molecular Biology Institute; the Department of Kinesiology; creating the UCLA School of Engineering; the School of Nursing; the School of Law; the 1976 reorganization of the Academic Senate; the Graduate Council; the Admissions Committee; the Academic Senate's attempts to halt admissions to the Chicano Studies Program; California governors and the University of California budget; the Board of Regents of the University of California dismiss University President Clark Kerr; the Angela Davis case; the lifting of the cold war atmosphere on campus; increasing government interference in the process of appointments and promotions;