Donald Voet received a B.S. in Chemistry from the California Institute of Technology in 1960, a Ph.D. in Chemistry from Harvard University in 1966, and then did postdoctoral research in the Biology Department at MIT with Alexander Rich. Upon completion of his postdoc in 1969, Don took up a faculty position in the Chemistry Department at the University of Pennsylvania where, he has taught a variety of biochemistry courses as well as general chemistry and X-ray crystallography.
His major area of research is the X-ray crystallography of molecules of biological interest. He has been a visiting scholar at Oxford University, the University of California at San Diego, and the Weizmann Institute of Science in Israel. He is the coauthor of four editions of Fundamentals of Biochemistry (first published in 1999) as well as four editions of Biochemistry, a more advanced textbook (first published in 1990). Altogether, these textbooks have sold nearly 550,000 copies including 25 translations into 9 different languages. He has also written or helped write ancillary materials to accompany these textbooks including Student Companions, Solutions Manuals, interactive molecular graphics exercises, and animated exercises.
Together with Judith G. Voet, he is Co-Editor-in-Chief of the journal Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Education. He is a member of the Education Committee of the International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology. He was the recipient, together with Judith G. Voet, of the 2012 award for Exemplary Contributions to Education given by the American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology. He has been an invited speaker at numerous national and international venues. His hobbies include backpacking, scuba diving, skiing, travel, photography, and writing biochemistry textbooks.