Boy Scouts of America Recognizes Volunteer and Winner of Nobel Prize in Chemistry
Baltimore-Area Resident and Boy Scout Assistant Scoutmaster Receives Chemistry's Highest Honor
(December 2003, Irving, TX) Most of the time, the Boy Scouts of
America recognizes its members and volunteers for their achievements inside
the organization. Today, the BSA is proud to recognize one of its 1.2 million
adult volunteers for his accomplishments outside Scouting.
Eagle Scout, Baltimore-area Scouting volunteer, and eminent chemistry
and medical researcher from Johns Hopkins Medical School Dr. Peter Agre
recently received news that he and one of his colleagues had been awarded
the Nobel Prize in chemistry for their work in water channels at the
A number of reporters have asked Agre how it feels to win the Nobel
Prize. His response has been, "Honestly I feel I identify a lot more with
Huckleberry Finn than with Albert Einstein." That sounds like a real
Agre and his colleague, Dr. Roderick McKinnon from Rockefeller University,
will be in Stockholm, Sweden, to accept the Nobel Prize on December 9,
"The Boy Scouts are proud to recognize one of our own for this significant
accomplishment," said Chief Scout Executive Roy L. Williams. "We have more
than 1.2 million volunteers who give of their time and talents every day. We
are proud to count Dr. Agre among the strong cadre of volunteers who shape
the lives of our youth every day."
The Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences informed Agre of his selection in
late October. "I am an early riser, but this was a little earlier than usual.
I received a call at 5:30 A.M. from Sweden that produced quite a bit of
celebration in our house," Agre said.
"My youngest daughter, a Venturing crew member, was delighted, and for
the first time in my life she came back and said, "'All my friends say
this is so cool!'"
Agre's family has a long history in the Scouting movement. In addition
to Agre earning his Eagle Scout Award as a youth in Minnesota, his daughter
is a Venturer, his son received his Eagle Scout Award last year, and his
brother is also an Eagle Scout.
"As a little kid, I always wanted to be a Scout. Scouting was wonderful,
and in Boys' Life you get to see all these glorious things that the
older Scouts do ... I just enjoyed it immensely and it seemed like the
logical thing to do then is to join Boy Scouts," Agre said.
Agre is an assistant Scoutmaster and Venturing crew leader in the Baltimore
area. "So most of the year, I sit at a desk with papers and in front of a
computer," he said. "It's not exactly what you call exciting. My Scouting and
high-adventure involvement is something I look forward to very much, and I
think the kids really benefit from having those experiences.
"I would advise kids to take a look at Scouting. It has wonderful programs,
and the lessons you learn are with you for your whole life. It's been very
good for me and my family," Agre said.
The Scouting movement is composed of 1.2 million volunteers working together
for the sole purpose of helping its more than 3 million youth succeed in life.
The Boy Scouts of America's 94-year history is a testament to the enduring
values of the Scouting program. For more information about Scouting, as well
as opportunities to volunteer in area communities, visit old.scouting.org.