The University of Michigan Senate's Lecture on Academic and Intellectual Freedom was established in 1990 to honor three professors.:
Clement L. Markert (left)
Mark Nickerson (center), and
H. Chandler Davis (right),
Clement L. Markert (1917 - 1999)
Clement L. Markert was Professor of Biology at Johns Hopkins University (1957-1965), the Henry Ford II Professor of Biology and Chair of the Department of Biology at Yale University (1965-1986) and Distinguished University Research Professor of Animal Science and Genetics at North Carolina State University (1986-1993). His research interests were focused on developmental genetics, reproductive biology, and biotechnology. He was a member of the National Academy of Sciences and served as co-chair of the Developmental Biology Interdisciplinary Cluster for President Ford’s Biomedical Research Panel in 1975. Professor Markert was elected to the Presidency of the American Institute of Biological Sciences, the American Society of Zoologists, the Society for Developmental Biology, and the American Genetics Association.
Clement Markert was born on April 11, 1917, in Las Animas, Colorado. He is the son of Edwin John (E.J.) and Sarah (Sally) Elliott Markert. He worked at a steel mill in Pueblo, Colorado as a supervisor and during the war at the ordinance where guns were produced. He began his academic career as an assistant professor of zoology at the University of Michigan in 1950 after earning his bachelor’s degree from the University of Colorado, his M.A. from the University of California at Los Angeles and his doctorate from Johns Hopkins University. He died on October 1, 1999, in Colorado Springs, Colorado.
In 1954 Clement Markert was called to testify before the House Un-American Activities Committee. He invoked Constitutional rights according to the Fifth Amendment and refused to answer the Committee’s questions concerning his political associations. Consequently, he was suspended from the University of Michigan. He was later reinstated with the support of the Faculty Senate, his department and his college, and he eventually achieved tenure.