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Dr Maria Dusinska awarded Slovak Order

Foto: Presidentens pressetjeneste

On January 1st 2024, the Slovak president Zuzana Čaputová bestowed the Order of Ľudovít Štúr 2nd class to NILU’s Dr Maria Dusinska.

Dr Dusinska got the award for her efforts in developing research and technology, specifically within the professional fields of genotoxicity and mutagenicity, and for spreading the good name of the Slovak Republic abroad.

“Science is a reward in itself”

Dr. Maria Dusinska (right) with the Slovak president Zuzana Čaputová. Photo: Katarina Dusinska

Maria Dusinska, senior scientist at NILU, says she was very surprised when she got the phone call from the Slovak president’s office, telling her that she would receive the award.

“I have always regarded the pleasure and fun I get from science as a reward in itself, so I did not expect any more,” she says. “There are many more deserving Slovak scientists; however, I am deeply honoured to be among this special group of exceptional people.”

Dr Dusinska also stresses the fact that this award is a result of great support from NILU, her department and especially from the Health Effects Lab team.

“I was always lucky to have a great, enthusiastic team and bright young people around me. I would not have gotten this award without their hard work and support. In science it is never one person who deserves recognition. It is always teamwork and thus, it should also be a team award.”

The Order of Ľudovít Štúr

Alena Bartonova, Research Director and EU coordinator, explains that the Ľudovít Štúr orders are the highest awards a Slovak citizen can receive, and have been awarded since 1994. This year, there were in total 34 awardees and 16 of them received Ľudovít Štúr Order: Five awardees received the Order of Ľudovít Štúr 1st class, eight were awarded the Order of Ľudovít Štúr 2nd class and three received the Order of 3rd class.

Maria Dusinska was one of only two scientists honoured; the other scientist was Dr Maria Bielikova. She is very well known in the field of artificial intelligence and received the order for her efforts in research, technology, and education.

The Order of Ľudovít Štúr 2nd class. Photo: Maria Dusinska

“We are all extremely proud of Maria”, says Research Director Pernilla Bohlin-Nizzetto at NILU’s department of Environmental Chemistry and Health Effects. “Her extraordinary accomplishments are results of hard work and long-time commitment. This order is well-deserved proof of Maria’s scientific engagement and mission, and a testimony to the perseverance, vision and creativity that have characterized her entire scientific career.”

Brilliant, enthusiastic and caring

Senior scientist Maria Dusinska came to NILU in 2006. She soon after founded NILU’s GLP certified Health Effects Laboratory, where she was a research director until her part-time retirement last year.

Long-time colleague and Head of section for the Health Effects laboratory, Dr Elise Rundén Pran, says that this award is very well deserved and a big achievement for the whole research group.

“I am speaking for the whole group when I say that we are so proud of Maria. We are also extremely grateful for being able to work with and learn from her. She is not only a great scientist, but also a very caring, enthusiastic, dedicated, and motivating colleague, who truly loves to share her knowledge and brilliant ideas with the scientists she meets on her way. Maria is a great researcher, with a unique ability to make friends with everyone – from the bus drivers to internationally very well recognized scientists.”

Our warmest congratulations to Maria, from all her colleagues at NILU!

Maria Dusinska (far left) with the team from the Health Effects Laboratory. Photo: Private.