ARC unveils tribute to mother of Nobel Prize winner Carol Greider


American River College President Thomas Greene unveils a plaque to honor the mother of Nobel laureate winner Carol Greider on March 16.

Joseph Daniels and Joseph Daniels

Jean Foley Greider was so well liked by students that her former colleague Bill Becker joked that she should have a fan club dedicated to her.

Becker was present at the unveiling of the Greider Grove, a tribute to the late American River College professor and the mother of Nobel laureate Carol Greider.

Carol won the prize for being a part of the discovery of the enzyme telomerase.

Her mother Jean taught botany courses at ARC for one semester.

Becker recalled memories of working with Jean at ARC as he gave a speech during the dedication ceremony.

It was Jean’s idea to take the students around campus to identify the different plant life that could be found on campus.

“We probably look like two characters out of an Arthur Conan Doyle novel,” Becker recalled Jean saying, as they scavenged around the school with magnifying glasses looking for plants.

Carol said that the time that Jean spent in Sacramento was one of the times she didn’t know much about, and that coming to ARC helped to fill in the gaps.

Becker gave Carol his faculty yearbook from the year that her mother worked at the college.

“It’s a very wonderful gift that I’m very happy to have,” said Carol.

Added Carol: “I think it’s a very lovely event. It’s nice to have the dedication, but it’s also nice to meet the people to make the personal connections.”

Carol was accompanied to the event with her daughter Gwendolyn.

“It’s really nice to come here to meet all these people who she was very good friends with,” said Gwendolyn.

Becker said that the nostalgia almost brought him to tears.