Marc Lappe, an author, medical ethicist and toxicologist who helped shape the country's environmental and health policies, has died of cancer at his home in northern California, according to his family. He was 62.
GUALALA, Calif. Marc Lappe, an author, medical ethicist and toxicologist who helped shape the country's environmental and health policies, has died of cancer at his home in northern California, according to his family. He was 62.
Lappe was a leading voice in the environmental and anti-biotechnology movements. He also served as an expert witness and consultant for plaintiff attorneys suing chemical companies, including lawsuits against silicone gel breast implant makers, the producers of the herbicide Agent Orange and the high-profile case against W.R. Grace & Co. that was popularized in a best-selling book and Hollywood movie, "A Civil Action."
When he died May 14, he was the director of the Center for Ethics and Toxics, a Gualala, Calif.-based nonprofit that advised California municipalities concerned about contaminants in their drinking water. California Gov. Jerry Brown in 1978 named Lappe chief of the state's Office of Health, Law and Values and later put him in charge of the state's Hazard Evaluation System. Lappe resigned in 1980 after he opposed the state's spraying of Malathion to halt the Medfly outbreak plaguing California's citrus crops.
The Newark, N.J. native wrote 14 books on a wide range of topics, including "Germs That Won't Die," which was published in 1982 and warned of the public health threat of antibiotic resistance.
Lappe earned a doctorate in experimental pathology at the University of Pennsylvania and held teaching posts at the University of California, Berkeley, Sarah Lawrence College, University of Illinois, Chicago School of Medicine and the College of Marin.
Source: Associated Press