This volume of the Rice Genetics
Newsletter is dedicated to the late Dr. Dharmawansa Senadhira and Dr.
Man-emon Takahashi on the occasion of his 80th birthday.
The late Dr. D. Senadhira (1944
Dharmawansa Senadhira was born
in Sir Lanka, 18 January, 1944. He completed his B Sc (Agriculture) in 1967
at University of Ceylon, Sri Lanka; and M Sc (Genetics) in 1974 and Ph D
(Genetics) in 1976 at the University of California, Davis, USA. He was a
Rice Breeder (1968-1975), Senior Rice Breeder and Coordinator of the Rice
Improvement Program (1976-1979), and Senior Breeder and Deputy Director
for Research (1980-1984) for the Department of Agriculture, Sri Lanka. Improved
rice varieties developed under his leadership are planted on most of the
riceland in Sri Lanka and in several countries of Asia and Africa. His contributions
to rice improvement were recognized by the Sri Lanka PresidentÍs Award for
Scientific Achievement (1981) and Ceres Medal from FAO (1982).
Dr. Senadhira joined IRRI as Rice Breeder in 1984
and was appointed the Leader of the InstituteÍs Flood-prone Rice Research
Program in 1996. Dr. Senadhira developed and refined screening techniques
for determining the inheritance of tolerances for soil- related stresses,
low temperature, and submergence in rice. Working in close collaboration
with national agricultural research systems (NARS), he developed improved
germplasm for flood-prone ricelands and for irrigated ricelands affected
by low temperature and salinity. His latest research emphasis was on developing
improved germplasm with higher concentration of micronutrients such as iron
and zinc in rice grains. He was selected to receive the prestigious Fukui
International Koshihikari Rice Prize for 1998 in recognition of his outstanding
achievements in developing improved rice varieties.
Dr. Senadhira will be sorely missed by high colleagues
at IRRI and his collaborators in the NARS, not only for his excellent scientific
achievements and leadership, but also for his open, warm, and ever-friendly
personality; his irrepressible sense of humor, and his willingness to take
on new tasks and responsibilities whenever asked. He was a founding member
of Rice Genetics Cooperative and served as its treasurer from 1985 till
Dr. Senadhira, Sena to his friends, died in vehicular
accident on 7 July 1998 in Bangladesh. He was unmarried and leaves behind
three brothers, Irvin, Walter, and Stanley and a sister, Sandaseeli, in
Dr. Man-emon Takahashi (1918
Dr. Man-emon Takahashi was born
in 1918 in Mizusawa-shi, Iwate Prefecture, Japan. After graduating from
the Faculty of Agriculture, Hokkaido Imperial University in 1940, he
was appointed as Instructor there. He was promoted to Associate Professor
in 1947 and to Professor of Plant Breeding in 1965 at the Faculty of
Agriculture, Hokkaido University. He has devoted himself to education
and research work in plant breeding and genetics over more than 40 years.
He was awarded the Doctoral Degree of Agricultural Science by Hokkaido
University in 1957 for his genetic studies of rice. He was also elected
as Dean of the Faculty of Agriculture during 1977-1981. In the Japanese
Society of Breeding he served as president during 1978-1982. After his
retirement from the University he was elected Professor Emeritus of
Hokkaido University in 1981. Following this, he also served as President
of Hokkaido Musashi WomenÍs College. After that, he served as the Director
general of the newly established Hokkaido Green-Bio Institute during
1987-1995 and developed new plant breeding methods using biotechnology.
Dr. Takahashi is an outstanding
scientist in plant breeding and genetics. He initiated the long-term
research entitled "Genetical Studies on Rice Plant" from 1945,
assisting Professor Dr. Nagao. Extensive research work in both genetics
and breeding of rice was achieved under his guidance together with his
students and research fellows. In 1991, "The One Hundredth Report
of Genetical Studies on Rice Plant-Linkage studies and future prospects"
was published in co-authorship with his successor, Professor Kinoshita.
He also organized a research project on the development of molecular
and cellular plant breeding during 1985-1988 with the aid of the Ministry
of Education of Japan and contributed to the development of new breeding
In recognition of his brilliant
achievements, he has been awarded Medal from the Japan Academy in
1965 together with Dr. S. Nagao, and was elected as a life member
of the Japan Academy in 1987. He has also received the following honors
in various fields. Award of Breeding Science in 1962; Hokkaido Cultural
Award in 1982; Honorary Fellow of the Japanese Society for Chemical
Regulation of Plants in 1987; The Order of the Rising Sun, Second
Class in 1989; Honorary Fellow of the Japanese Society of Breeding
in 1991; Award for Contribution to the Hokkaido Development in 1992;
Person of Cultural Merit (Bunka Koro-sha) in 1995.
In connection with
the Rice Genetics Cooperative, he has continued his special efforts
to establish the standardized gene symbols together with Dr. N. E. Jodon,
Dr. R. Seetharaman and Dr. T. T. Chang. Resulting from their efforts,
the report of the International Committee on Gene Symbols and Nomenclature
became a foundation for the present rules in the Rice Genetics Cooperative.
He served as Chairman of the Rice Genetics Cooperative during 1990-1995.
He is respected and beloved by
everyone who has been associated with him for his excellent personality
and warm-hearted guidance and assistance. His hobbies, photography
and painting are highly admired.