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Only at Rutgers: Photos from Mark Keller’s Recognition Dinner

BrochureThe Mark Keller Papers, donated to the Center of Alcohol Studies (CAS)  by Keller’s daughter, Ita N. Wiener, features a professionally designed large photo album. With its nearly one hundred colorful snapshots taken at various moments of the event, the collection commemorates Keller’s Recognition Dinner held on October 7, 1977 in the Fiddler’s Elbow Country Club, Lamington, NJ (a part of Bedminster township).

The event was chaired by R. Brinkley Smithers, a major benefactor of CAS on behalf of the Christopher D. Smithers Foundation. Vice chairmen represented various scholarly, government, and other organizations from all over the world, such as the Addiction Research Foundation, the Jellinek Memorial Fund, the National Council on Alcoholism, the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism,  the International Council on Alcohol and Addiction. Several Rutgers University dignitaries and two senators are also listed as vice chairmen.

The list of attendees is very impressive but not to be shared in public, as it contains contact information for all the illustrious guests. However, the pictures speak for themselves, if one can identify Griffith Edwards, Max Glatt, Marty Mann, Jorge Mardones, Robin Room, George Strachan, and more, attesting to Selden Vacon’s description of Mark Keller as the “scholars’ scholar” in his article on Mark Keller’s retirement published in JSA in the same year.


The photos document the official the ceremony. Mark Keller was awarded the Jellinek Memorial Prize in the category “Documentation: for his outstanding contributions to the documentation of the alcohol literature.” The Jellinek Memorial Award is the highest honor an alcohol researcher can be awarded. Established after Jellinek’s death in 1963 by diverse national groups came, the Jellinek Memorial Fund keeps the name of E. M. Jellinek, one of the greatest contributors to alcohol studies alive. As we found out during our interview with the legendary Harold Kalant, long-term president of the Jellinek Memorial Fund, the idea came from David Archibald of the Canadian Alcohol Research Foundation, who was also present at the event.

Silver plate

Mark Keller was among the founders of the Jellinek Memorial Fund. He became a board member later, and he was the speaker at the event when Bill W. was posthumously awarded. The actual prize is the Bunky, a bronze casting of Jellinek’s head, with $1,000 originally, is awarded to scientists who made significant contributions to the advancement of knowledge and understanding of alcoholism. Keller’s Bunky, along with a commemorative silver tray he received from his colleagues at JSA (pictured on the right), is now on permanent display in Conference Room 200 at CAS in Smithers Hall, as part of the Mark Keller Papers Collection.

The talented photographers captured the atmosphere of the event by portraying guests from all over the world. Rutgers leaders and promising young scholars in the field at that time can also be spotted. The album has not been fully digitized yet, but some pictures taken at the event are already available in RUcore.

Photo collage of attendees

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