2017 OUTSTANDING ENVIRONMENTAL PEACE
Place of Birth: Des Moines, Iowa, USA
Year granted award: 2017
Award Category: Outstanding Environmental Peace
Work Title: Public Interest Attorney; Executive Director, Alliance for Bio-integrity
Steven M. Druker is a public interest attorney who founded the Alliance for Bio-Integrity and, as its executive director, initiated a lawsuit that forced the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to divulge its files on genetically engineered (GE) foods. This revealed that politically influenced administrators had covered up the extensive warnings of their own scientists about the abnormal risks, misrepresented the facts, and then allowed these novel products onto the market without requiring the testing that’s mandated by federal food safety law.
He is a prominent commentator on the risks and regulatory issues of GE foods and has served on the food safety panels at conferences conducted by the National Research Council and the Food and Drug Administration; been a featured speaker at symposia at the British House of Commons and the National Congress of Brazil and at press conferences sponsored by the Brazilian Medical Association, the Swedish Consumers Association, and concerned members of the European Parliament; and appeared on numerous television and radio programs — and been featured in numerous newspaper and magazine articles — across the globe.
He has been invited to speak at many universities (including Harvard, Columbia, Cornell, and the University of Copenhagen) and has met with government officials world-wide, including the UK’s Environmental Minister, Canada’s Health Minister, and the heads of food safety for the UK, France, Ireland, and Australia. In addition, he was invited to confer at the White House Executive Offices with an inter-agency task force of President Clinton’s Council on Environmental Quality.
His articles on genetically engineered food have appeared in several respected publications, including The Congressional Quarterly Researcher, The Parliament Magazine (a Brussels-based periodical), and The Financial Times.
His influential book, Altered Genes Twisted Truth: How the Venture to Genetically Engineer Our Food Has Subverted Science, Corrupted Government, and Systematically Deceived the Public, was released in March 2015 with a foreword by Jane Goodall hailing it as “without doubt one of the most important books of the last 50 years.” Among the other scientists who have praised it are David Schubert, a professor and laboratory director at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies, who has called it “incisive, insightful, and truly outstanding”; and Joseph Cummins, Professor Emeritus of Genetics at the University of Western Ontario, who extolled it as “a landmark” that “should be required reading in every university biology course.”
He majored in philosophy at the University of California, Berkeley, received a special award for “Outstanding Accomplishment” in that field, was elected to Phi Beta Kappa in his junior year, and graduated with “Great Distinction in General Scholarship.” He also attended UC Berkeley’s law school, where he was elected to both the California Law Review and the Order of the Coif (the legal honor society).