Image of W F Doolittle
W F Doolittle's Senior Photo

Warren Ford Doolittle, member of the Class of 1959, took many leadership positions at Uni. He served on the student council as president, vice president, and class representative in different years, and was chairman of the Finance Committee. Doolittle was also a member of Uni’s chorus and orchestra. 
During his high school years, Doolittle first acquired a passion for molecular biology when interning for Sol Spiegelman, an influential microbiologist. After graduating Uni, Doolittle went on to earn a Bachelor’s Degree in Biochemical Sciences at Harvard University. He earned a PhD at Stanford University, then became a professor at Dalhousie University in Nova Scotia. Doolittle worked in the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, researching cyanobacteria and archaea  along with publishing papers on the conceptual changes in genomics.

Today, Doolittle is formally retired, but still working full time at Dalhousie University. He is active in the field of philosophy as well as biology, studying the philosophical meaning of natural selection and applying that meaning to biology. Doolittle is also writing a book for the MIT Press discussing the Gaia Hypothesis, the notion that the entire Earth is a single organism. With the help of philosophers, he is rethinking the Hypothesis and trying to redefine evolution to accommodate it.

Senior Quote

“It’s a moot point.”

Memberships & Awards

  • Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada
  • Elected to the United States National Academy of Sciences in 2002
  • Recieved the 2013 Gerhard Herzberg Canada Gold Medal for Science and Engineering
  • Recieved the 2017 Killam Prize


While teaching at Dalhousie University, Doolittle earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Photography at the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design.