Meisha awarded Gilliam Graduate Fellowship
Local Vibes
June 3, 2005
Meisha awarded Gilliam Graduate Fellowship

Vincentian scholar Meisha Bynoe has been awarded a prestigious fellowship.

Bynoe is one of the first recipients of the Gilliam Fellowships which were named for the late James H. Gilliam Jr. a charter Trustee of Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI). They provide support for Ph.D studies in the life sciences to disadvantaged students “including underrepresented minorities in HHMI’s Exceptional Research Opportunities (EXROP) undergraduate summer research program”. According to the AScribe Newswire, Gilliam spent a lifetime fostering diversity and opportunity in education and science.{{more}}

Bynoe, the daughter of Alfred and Theresa Bynoe, graduated from the St.Vincent Community College in 2001 and was awarded a scholarship for her outstanding academic performance when she gained five A level passes.

Now, she is among six talented recipients of this prestigious fellowship. The others are: Naira Rezende from Brazil, and from the USA, Imran Babar from Minnesota; Luis Leon and Alexander Red Eagle from California; and Nancy Van Prooyen from Colorado and Arkansas.

For the past two summers, EXROP has placed a group of these outstanding minority and disadvantaged undergraduates in labs of HHMI investigators and professors. Their research projects ranged from identification of the cells in which lung cancer originates to investigation of the mechanism by which the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) establishes and sustains latent infection in cells.

Gilliam served as a trustee of the National Geographic Society and the Delaware Community Foundation, and for many years, he chaired Delaware’s Judicial Nominating Commission. Gilliam was an alumnus of Morgan State University in Baltimore, Maryland, where he and his wife, Linda, established a $1.5 million fine arts endowment in honor of his father, James H. Gilliam Sr. on his father’s 80th birthday in 2000.

Gilliam, who was 58 when he died in 2003, was chief counsel at Knickerbocker LLC, a private investment firm. Gilliam’s wife, Linda J. Gilliam, and his father, James H. Gilliam Sr., were scheduled to attend the ceremony to present the fellowships.

Bynoe earned a bachelor’s degree in biology and music at MIT. She conducted research in the lab of HHMI investigator Richard Locksley at the University of California, San Francisco, where she helped develop assays to identify certain macrophages or immune system cells. She will enter Yale University’s graduate program in microbiology soon.