Daniel Fairbanks

Faculty Member

Dr. Daniel Fairbanks


Dr. Daniel J. Fairbanks is Professor of Biology and University Research Officer at Utah Valley University. He previously was Dean of the College of Science and Interim Dean of the College of Technology and Computing at UVU. Prior to joining UVU, he was at the University of Massachusetts-Amherst where he was Professor and Head of the Department of Plant Soil and Insect Sciences. Prior to that time he was at Brigham Young University where he was Dean of Undergraduate Education, Associate Dean of Biology and Agriculture, Director of the Honors Program, and Professor of Plant and Wildlife Sciences. He received his Ph.D. from the University Arizona, M.S. from the University of Minnesota, and B.S. from Brigham Young University. He is a geneticist specializing in evolutionary genetics, the history of genetics, plant genetics and breeding, and international scientific development. He is author or co-author of five scholarly books and fifty-seven scientific journal articles on genetics, human evolutionary genetics, the history of genetics, plant genetics and breeding, and science education. Dr. Fairbanks is an accomplished artist, with sculpture, paintings, and drawings in museum, public, and private collections in the United States, Latin America, and Europe. He has received numerous awards, among them the Mendel Memorial Medal in recognition of his scholarly and artistic contributions highlighting Gregor Mendel, the Trustees Award of Excellence at UVU, the Karl G. Maeser Professorship of General Education, the Karl G. Maeser Excellence in Teaching Award, and the Alcuin Award for General Education Teaching at BYU.


Ph D, University of Arizona, 1988

Major: Agronomy and Plant Genetics

MS, University of Minnesota, 1985

Major: Plant Breeding

BS, Bringham Young University, 1982

Major: Double major_ Portuguese/Agronomy



Special Topics in Biology, Summer 2022

BIOL 4500

Principles of Evolution WE, Spring 2022


Fairbanks, Daniel , Joint Mathematics Meetings, "Gregor Mendel and Combinatorial Mathematics at the DNA Level", American Mathematical Society and Mathematical Association of America, Online. (January 6, 2021)
Fairbanks, Daniel , International Mendel Forum, "Mendel and Darwin_ Untangling a Persistent Enigma", Gregor Mendel Gesellschaft Wien, Vienna, Austria. (March 6, 2020)
Palais, Bob (Presenter & Author), Fairbanks, Daniel (Presenter & Author), Joint Mathematics Meetings, "How good is the chi-squared goodness-of fit test? Revisiting a controversy from the birth of modern statistics and genetics", American Mathematical Society and Mathematical Association of America, Denver, Colorado. (January 18, 2020)
Fairbanks, Daniel , International Mendel Forum, "Darwin's Influence on Mendel", The Genetics Society and the Moravian Museum, London, England. (March 8, 2019)
Fairbanks, Daniel , International Mendel Forum, "The Might of Destiny_ Gregor Mendel's Powerful Yet Controversial Legacy", Moravian Museum, Brno, Czech Republic. (March 8, 2017)
Fairbanks, Daniel (Presenter & Author), Ogden, Heath (Author Only), Fairbanks, Aaron D, Parker, Glendon J, Maughan, Peter J, American Society of Human Genetics Annual Meeting, "NANOGP8: Evolution of a human-specific cancer-promoting retrogene", American Society of Human Genetics, Boston, Massachusetts. (November, 2013)

Scholarly/Creative Works

Fairbanks, Daniel , (2021) "Genetic and Phenotypic Odyssey_ Voyage of the Grain Amaranths from the Americas to the Old World" (vol. The Amaranth Genome). Berlin: Compendium of Plant Genomes/Springer . https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-72365-1_3
Fairbanks, Daniel , (2020) "Mendel and Darwin_ untangling a persistent enigma." (Issue: 2, vol. 124). United Kingdom: Heredity. https://www.nature.com/articles/s41437-019-0289-9
Fairbanks, Daniel , Abbott, Scott , (2019) "Alexander Makowsky’s January 1865 lecture “On Darwin’s theory of organic creation”: an English translation with commentary" (vol. 55). Folia Mendeliana. http://www.mzm.cz/fileadmin/user_upload/publikace/casopisy/2018_2019_2020_FM/FolMendel-2019-1-web.pdf
Fairbanks, Daniel , Abbott, Scott , (2016) "Darwin's Influence on Mendel_ Evidence from a New Translation of Mendel's Paper." (Issue: 2, vol. 204). USA: Genetics. https://www.genetics.org/content/204/2/401
Abbott, Scott , Fairbanks, Daniel , (2016) "Experiments on Plant Hybrids by Gregor Mendel." (Issue: 2, vol. 204). USA: Genetics. https://www.genetics.org/content/204/2/407
Parker, G J, Leppert, T , Anex, D S, Hilmer, J K, Matsunami, N , Baird, L , Stevens, J , Parsawar, K , Durbin-Johnson, B P, Rocke, D M, Nelson, C , Fairbanks, Daniel , Wilson, A S, Rice, R H, Woodward, Scott , Bothner, B , Hart, B R, Leppert, M , (2016) "Demonstration of Protein-Based Human Identification Using the Hair Shaft Proteome." (Issue: 9, vol. 11). PloS One. https://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0160653


Trustees Award of Excellence

Utah Valley University - April 24, 2017

University-wide award recognizing overall excellence

Mendel Memorial Medal

Mendelianum - Moravian Museum - March 8, 2017

For contribution to interpretations of Mendel's scientific work

Karl G. Maeser General Education Professorship

Brigham Young University

In recognition of excellence in general education teaching

Karl G. Maeser Excellence in Teaching Award

Brigham Young University

BYU's highest teaching award, in recognition of excellence in teaching

Teacher of the Year

Brigham Young University

Teacher of the year (voted by graduating students)

Teacher of the Year

Brigham Young University

Departmental teaching award, by vote of graduating students