Known best for helping to develop the BLAST (Basic Local Alignment Search Tool) for the National Center for Biotechnology Information, this computer expert, bioinformatician, and frequently cited researcher also served as vice president of the informatics research division of Celera Genomics.
He earned his undergraduate degree in mathematics from the California Institute of Technology and went on to receive his PhD in computer science from the University of Colorado.
He was a 2001 recipient of the prestigious Paris Kanellakis Award.
A native of Boise, Idaho, he later taught at both the University of Arizona and the University of California, Berkeley.
In 2012, he was tasked with directing a systems biology program at the Max Planck Institute of Molecular Cell Biology and Genetics in Dresden, Germany.