When the Institute hosts visiting researchers, it welcomes them by reserving a carrel for the duration of their visit and puts the materials they are studying on hold for them there. This month, the Bioethics Research Library will feature four new study carrels to be named and dedicated in honor of four founding figures of the field, celebrating their long tenure at the Institute and transformative work in the field of bioethics:
LeRoy Walters, PhD, was a Senior Research Scholar from 1971-2010 and Director of the Kennedy Institute of Ethics from 1996 to 2000. He has published widely on genetic ethics, research ethics, and ethics and the Holocaust. He has served for three terms—including three years as Chair—on the Recombinant DNA Advisory Committee of the National Institutes of Health, which reviews human gene therapy protocols, and is a Fellow of the Hastings Center, a member of the Bioethics Advisory Committee of the March of Dimes, and a member of the Noninvasive Prenatal Testing (NIPT) Study Advisory Board at the Cleveland Clinic.
Tom Beauchamp, PhD, was a Senior Research Scholar at the KIE from 1973-2016. In late 1975, he joined the staff of the National Commission for the Protection of Human Subjects of Biomedical and Behavioral Research, where he wrote the bulk of The Belmont Report (1978). In 2003, he was presented Georgetown University’s Career Recognition Award, which is awarded to a faculty member in the University each year for distinguished research across an entire career.
Robert Veatch, PhD, was Professor Emeritus of Medical Ethics at Georgetown and Senior Research Scholar at the KIE from 1979-2015. One of the pioneers of contemporary medical ethics, Dr. Veatch served as an ethics consultant in the early legal case of Karen Ann Quinlan, the woman whose parents won the right to forgo life-support (1975-76), and testified in the case of Baby K, an anencephalic infant whose mother argued for a right of access to continued ventilatory support (1994). From 1981 to 1982, he served as a consultant to the President’s Commission for the Study of Ethical Problems in Medicine and Biomedical Research.
Doris Goldstein was the founding director of the BRL, where she served from 1973-2012. After finishing a master’s in library science, she was recruited by LeRoy Walters and André Hellegers to set up the KIE’s Library. In her nearly four decades with the Library, Doris has had many roles and developed unique special collections: from archiving DNA patents to leading the the National Reference Center for Bioethics Literature to helping establish a German bioethics library at the University of Bonn.
Each of these extraordinary scholars shaped and formed the KIE, and held fast to the vision of creating an ethics institute that would prove critical to the nascent field of bioethics and be a credit to Georgetown University for years to come. We are grateful for their long years of dedicated effort, and they should know that they will be missed by colleagues and friends.