In Memoriam - 2019

We have learned of the deaths of the following members of the College of Chemistry community. Listed below are their names, UC Berkeley degree(s), and information about their academic and work history if known. We have also provided a link to an online obituary when available.

Liane Reif-Lehrer Ph.D. '60 Chem

Liane Reif-Lehrer

(11/06/2019) Scientist, feminist, wife, mother, teacher, poet, and ballroom dancer died November 6th after an extended battle with Alzheimer’s disease. She was 84. Born to Gerschon Reif, a dentist, and Klara (Chaja Lea) Gottfried Reif, she lived along with her older brother Frederich (1927-2019) in Vienna, Austria until 1939. She fled the Nazis with her mother and brother on the ill-fated S.S. St. Louis, which was bound for Cuba with 937 Jewish refugees but forced to return to Europe, where they disembarked in France. In September 1941 they managed to emigrate, sponsored by relatives in New York City. She attended Erasmus Hall High School, Barnard College (BA, 1956), and the University of California, Berkeley (PhD, Chemistry, 1960). 

After a year of round-the-world travel with her husband Sam (Sherwin Lehrer, Ph.D. ’61, Chem), and a postdoctoral fellowship at Harvard, from 1966-1985 she was a research scientist at the Mass Eye and Ear Infirmary and the Schepens Eye Research Institute, and a faculty member (1978-1985) and Director of the Office of Academic Affairs (1981-1983) at Harvard Medical School. She went on to start the consulting firm Erimon Associates which specialized in grant writing and published Writing a Successful Grant Application. In 1981 she founded the Women in Science Network to help navigate the challenges of career advancement. She is survived by her husband of 59 years Sherwin (Sam) Lehrer, and her children Damon Lehrer of Lexington, MA (with wife Aimee LeBrun and grandson Nathan Huckleberry Lebrun Lehrer), and Erica Lehrer of Montreal, QC.  

Learn more about Liane’s life in this oral history interview.

John Francis Heil  B.S. '57 ChemE; Ph.D. '65 ChemE

John Heil alumni(01/12/2019)  Born San Francisco, CA.  John attended UC Berkeley, immediately gravitating toward the sciences. He graduated in 1957 with his B.S. in Chemical Engineering, while fulfilling an army commission through the R.O.T.C. program, which he remained involved in after his return from active duty at Fort Lee, VA in 1958. With his B.S. in hand, John began his career with Stauffer Chemical. Stauffer supported and nurtured the young engineer, and encouraged him to move forward with his education. John went back to UC Berkeley, this time obtaining his Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering in 1965. His Ph.D. dissertation was with John Prausnitz, reflected in a paper, "Phase Equilibria in Polymer Solutions", AIChE Journal, v. 12, pp. 678-685 (1966)

These two relationships were critical for John. He remained with Stauffer through many iterations and promotions, and remained tightly linked to the College of Chemistry, taking on an advisory board position there in 1985. When he tried to resign as chairman from the advisory board in 1987, then Dean of the College Brad Moore personally asked John to stay and undertake some personal projects for him, which John enthusiastically accepted. He and the Advisory Board at that time had a significant role in starting what became the Tan Hall project. 

Arthur B. Pardee B.S. '42 Chem; (Ph.D. '47 Chem with Linus Pauling at CalTech)

Arthur Pardee(02/24/2019) Born Chicago, Ill. Dr. Arthur Pardee's (Art) numerous and diverse contributions to molecular and cancer biology will never be forgotten. In a field where most of us would be thrilled to make one major contribution, Art's legacy is vast, having shaped disparate areas of research including enzymology, DNA repair, gene regulation, cell-cycle control, and novel technologies that ushered in the era of global gene expression profiling. His seminal findings contributed to numerous aspects of biology as we understand them today. He was a pioneer in the discipline we now call translational research and his many contributions, which applied basic research discoveries in the laboratory to preclinical studies, helped move several treatment strategies more seamlessly to the clinic. But Art's legacy is not only defined by his many important discoveries. He trained hundreds of students and postdoctoral fellows who became successful scientists in their own right.

He held four long-term positions in academia: faculty member at Berkeley from 1947 to 1961; chair of the Biomedical Sciences department at Princeton University from 1961 to 1975; professor at Harvard Medical School from 1975 to 1992, and researcher at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute from 1975 to the time of his death. Learn more about his career here.

William Austin Pryor Ph.D.'54  Chem

William Pryor(03/13/2019) Born St. Louis, MO. William was the Boyd Professor of Chemistry, and the founding Director of both the Biodynamics Institute and the Pennington Biomedical Research Center, at Louisiana State University (LSU). After junior-high he completely skipped high school and was accepted at the University of Chicago with a scholarship, where he graduated Phi Beta Kappa with a Ph.B. in philosophy in 1948 and a B.S. in chemistry in 1951. He was awarded his Ph.D. in chemistry by UC Berkeley in 1954. After six years teaching at Berkeley, he taught at Purdue University, and then moved to LSU. He was promoted to Boyd Professor in 1972. He was the Founder and Director of the Biodynamics Institute that did research on biological oxidation and its role in human diseases. He was appointed the first Director of the Pennington Biochemical Research Center.

He was one of the first scientists to propose that free radicals and other oxidants can initiate chronic diseases such as heart disease and cancer. He was ranked as one of the 300 most cited life scientists in the World. He worked with five Nobel Prize winners: Linus Pauling (protein structure), Melvin Calvin (photosynthesis), William Libby (radio-carbon dating), Albert Szent-Gyorgi (Vitamin C), and Louis Ignarro (nitric oxide as a hormone). Dr. Pryor published more than 800 articles and more than 30 books, including the first textbook on free radicals. Learn more about his life.

Carlos Bryant Amspoker (05/16/19) B.S. ’48 Chem. Born Silt, Colorado. Carlos attended Cal Poly until World War II when he joined the U.S Marine Corps for 3 years. He went onto earn a B.S. in Chemistry from UC Berkeley. After graduation, he worked for Shell Chemical Corporation where he remained for 30 years, traveling to many different locations within the U.S. He retired in 1978 as the manager of the Shell Chemical Plant in Martinez and spent his retirement engaged in projects which included building a plane.

Harry Harris Bailey (03/05/2019) B.S. '42 Chem. Born Berkeley, CA.  Harry studied chemistry first at Sacramento Junior College and then transferred to UC Berkeley. After college, he became interested in Co-ops living in various communities in California during his life. During WWII, he was registered as a Conscientious Objector working instead in the California Civilian Public Service. After the war, he worked as a Civil Engineer with Pomeroy and Associates in Southern California. Later, he worked for Crammer engineering designing water treatment systems. 

Henry David Baldridge (01/04/2019) Ph.D. '50 Chem. Born St. Louis, Mo. Henry studied undergraduate chemistry at Rhodes College in Memphis. He was commissioned a Navy officer in 1945 and completed his Ph.D. in organic and physical chemistry at UC Berkeley in 1950. In association with the Applied Physics Laboratory, Johns Hopkins, and the US Navy, Henry participated in structural firing tests of antiaircraft guided missiles at sea. He served as liaison officer between the Bureau of Medicine and Surgery and all of the Navy’s early guided missile programs. He was on the staff of the Director, Navy Special Projects Office, Bureau of Naval Weapons, with responsibility for identification and control of chemical and physical health hazards incident to the testing, development, and operational deployment of the POLARIS intercontinental ballistic missile and Fleet Ballistic Missile Submarines. He lectured on rocket chemistry and physics at the U. S. Air Force School of Aerospace Medicine. He was a research chemist at the Naval Medical Research Institute, Bethesda, MD. He authored around 100 scientific papers and government reports, one book and two patents. He retired in 1971.

James Richard Beck  (01/16/2019)  B.S. '57 Chem. Born Paris, Illinois. Jim attended Purdue University for 2 ½ years before joining the Army in 1953 serving in the Korean War. Upon being discharged from the Army in 1956, he continued his education becoming the first in his family to graduate from college. He attended the University of California at Berkeley and graduated with high honors. Additionally, Jim received his Ph.D. in 1961 in biochemistry at the Illinois Department of Chemistry before joining Eli Lilly Company in Indianapolis as a research advisor. He worked there for 27 years before his retirement in 1988. While at Lilly, Jim invented 48 U.S. patents and authored 35 scientific publications.

Patrick R. Black  (03/04/2019)  B.S. '49 ChemE. Born Crescent City, CA. Pat was a navigator for the army/air force during World War II, serving his country in the South Pacific. After graduating from UC Berkeley with a degree in Chemical Engineering, Pat managed several high profile international construction projects around the world. His travels and exposure to diverse backgrounds fostered his love of culture, politics and food. After a career in international construction and living abroad in the Philippines, Pat moved back to his hometown of Chico, CA, to become an almond rancher in the early 1970s.

Norman Andrew Bonner (03/27/19) B.S ’42 Chem. Born San Francisco, California. Norman attended UC Berkeley earning a B.S in Chemistry. He went on to Princeton to receive his M.S and Ph.D. He was hired immediately out of college to work on the Manhattan Project in Los Alamos. After WWII ended, he moved to St. Louis to teach at Washington University. Norman then taught at Cornell University before returning to California to work at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory. He worked as a research scientist for the remainder of his career. Norman worked as a radio chemist, analytical chemist, and lastly as the coordinator for trace element analysis.

William Ball Boykin  (04/11/2019) B.S. '48 Chem. Born in Brooklyn, New York. He attended University of California at Berkeley and University of Wisconsin at Madison, where he earned a Masters in Chemical Engineering. Veteran of WWII, serving in the Navy. Bill worked for Shell Oil for four decades, in several locations, including Saudi Arabia. During that time, he and his wife Marg traveled extensively. He and a lifelong friend trekked to Annapurna as well. He was active in many civic organizations.

Hal B. H.  Cooper Jr.(10/25/19) B.S ’63 ChemE. Born Ames, Iowa. Hal attended the University of California Berkeley where he earned a B.S in chemical engineering. He went on to earn a Ph.D. in chemical engineering at the University of Washington. He began his teaching career at Texas A&M University in College Station, TX. He then moved to the University of Texas, Austin after which he took a break from teaching and moved to New Mexico. In New Mexico, Hal worked at Los Alamos but only remained there for one year. He went on to consulting work. 

Charles S. Fadley (08/01/19) M.S ’65 ChemE, Ph.D. ’70 Chem. Born Norwalk, Ohio. Charles S. Fadley was an American physicist who was a professor at University of California, Davis and an Elected Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, American Vacuum Society and Institute of Physics. He received his B.S in Chemical Engineering at MIT. He went on to UC Berkeley to earn his Ph.D. in chemistry. He did his postdoc research at Chalmers University of Technology in Sweden. While studying in Sweden he taught undergraduate physics and then began teaching chemistry at the university of Hawaii at Mano. Charles became a tenured chemistry professor in the Honolulu campus and remained there for 12 years. He moved to UC Davis’ Department of Physics with a staff science appointment at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory in the Material Sciences Division. He was awarded an Alfred P. Sloan Fellowship, the Medard Welch Award, the Helmholtz-Humboldt Award, and the David S. Shirley Award among his many honors.

John Louis Gland  (03/02/2019) Ph.D. '73 Chem. Born Valparaiso, Indiana. In high school John worked part-time at a gas station pumping gas and changing oil but soon realized he had a great aptitude for and interest in chemistry. After graduating he enrolled in Wittenberg University in Springfield, Ohio as a chemistry major.  John attended graduate school at the University of California-Berkeley College of Chemistry and did research under the tutelage of Professor Gabor Somorjai, earning his Ph.D. for seminal research into fundamental reaction chemistries on platinum surfaces. After graduation, John led research and development groups at General Motors and Exxon Research before becoming a full professor at the University of Michigan, with appointments in Chemistry, Applied Physics, and Chemical Engineering departments.  His research focused on the fundamentals of chemical reactions on surfaces using custom-designed and built ultra-high vacuum instrumentation.  He was an esteemed mentor to a diverse cadre of high school, undergraduate, and graduate students, with more than 20 Ph.D. and post-doctoral associates taking leadership positions in business, industry, and academia.

Leslie Whitney Goodrich (03/23/2019) B.A. '51 Chem. Born San Francisco, CA.  Leslie graduated in 1951 with a B.A. in Chemistry. She met her future husband Judson while working in the lab where he was a graduate student. Leslie and Jud were married in 1951 and settled in San Rafael, where she raised their three children. She was an active volunteer in a number of organizations. She was an early advocate for inclusion in education and sat on the board of the United Cerebral Palsy affiliate in Marin County.

Lawrence Graubart (08/13/19) B.S. ’59 ChemE. Born San Francisco, California. Lawrence joined the U.S Marines and then attended UC Berkeley. He graduated in 1959 earning a B.S. in Chemical Engineering. He spent his career at the Ampex Corporation where he remained for 32 years before retiring in 1991.

Arnold David Gutman (10/28/19) B.S ’62 Chem. Born San Francisco, California. Arnold completed his undergrad degree at UC Berkeley earning a B.S in organic chemistry. He began his career at Stauffer Chemical Research Center in Richmond where he remained for 30 years. During his research, Arnold accumulated 103 patents for compound. Arnold retired and moved to Downieville, CA to be with his family. He became involved with the Downieville Volunteer Fire Department and politics serving as his District’s representative for 12 years.

Dietrich Wilhelm Heinritz  (01/04/2019) B.S. '55 Chem.  Born Lauenburg Germany. Dietrich pursued his love of chemistry and attended the University of Munster in Westphalia. He came to America in the early 1950’s where he graduated in 1955 with a B.S. in Chemistry from UC Berkeley.  He became a naturalized citizen. Dietrich had a rewarding career as a chemist, working for NASA at Cape Canaveral in Florida, Stauffer Chemical Co., Ultra Chem Corp. retiring from IT Technology. He was a Mensa member starting in 1972 and had a passion for science and mathematics. He also enjoyed the arts, theater and classical music.

Richard Flores (05/04/19) B.S.’64 Chem. Born Bakersfield, California. Richard earned two degrees from UC Berkeley. His first degree was in Bacteriology which he put to use as a dental technician in the U.S Army. After he completed his military duty, Flores went back to Berkeley to earn his B.S. in Chemistry. He worked for Kaiser Aluminum Research after graduation. Richard went back for his third degree earning an MBA after he retired from Kaiser Aluminum and opened the El Lorito Restaurant in Pleasanton with his wife and family. Later he added being a real estate agent to his portfolio of careers.

Ronald Lee Hartgernik (06/12/19) Ph.D. ’68 Chem. Born South Havens, Minnesota. After earning a B.S in chemistry, Ron came to UC Berkeley for his Ph.D. in Organic Chemistry. He went to work in research management at ExxonMobil. In 1989 he left ExxonMobil and moved to South Haven to lead the Wyckoff Chemical Company saving the business and overseeing the company’s sale to DSM-Catalytica Pharmaceutical. In addition to his research and work experience, Ron was a member of the American Chemical Society for 53 years. He also took an active role in community service.

Robert W. Hermsen (11/03/19) Ph.D.’62 ChemE. Born Baker City, Oregon. Robert earned his undergraduate degree in chemical engineering from Oregon State University. He joined the US Army and served for several years before serving in the US Army reserves. Robert went on to attend UC Berkeley receiving his Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering. He started his career at United Technologies under the aerospace sector. He worked with solid rocket propellants for 31 years becoming an expert in the field. Robert then retired but continued to help out as a consultant in his field. Apart from his academia, military service, and industry work, he greatly enjoyed the outdoors, cooking and kept up with televised sports.

Jack M. Hollander (11/01/19) Ph.D. ’51 Chem. Born Youngstown, Ohio. Jack graduated from Ohio State University with a B.S in chemistry and UC Berkeley with a Ph.D. in nuclear chemistry. Jack co-founded the environmental research program at The Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory. He later became the Director of the lab’s Energy and Environment Division, serving for three years. Jack then moved to Washington to direct the National academy of Science CONAES energy study. However, it wasn’t long before he came back to Berkeley and became the first Director of the University of California’s Energy Institute. While serving as director, he co-founded the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy and was also the Chairman of the Beijer Institute of Energy and Human Ecology. Before retiring, Jack served as vice president for research and graduate studies at Ohio State University and was the founding editor of the book series Annual Review of Energy.

Stephen Mildram Holton  (02/01/2019) B.S. '65 Chem. Born Essex Fells, NJ. He attended Princeton, received his B.S. from UC Berkley, and his M.S. in Chemistry from Yale in 1966. His career included IBM systems engineering support for Boeing; and then for Shell while living in Europe; management at IBM's Competitive Analysis Lab while living in Tokyo; and research and development work at IBM Yorktown Research Lab.

Paul Francis Jacobs­ (05/03/19) B.S. ’54 ChemE. Born Dixon, California. Paul graduated from U.C Berkeley in 1954 earning his degree in Chemical Engineering. After graduating, Paul joined the U.S Navy where he served for three years. Paul worked as a research chemist for the U.S Borax Research corporation. Later he earned a Master of Science degree in Chemical Engineering at USC. Paul had a passion for the outdoors and enjoyed hiking, fishing and sailing taking both regional and cross-Pacific journeys.

Barry Jan (05/28/19) B.S. ’51 ChemE. Born Fresno, California. Barry graduated with a B.S. in Chemical Engineering from U.C Berkeley in 1951.  He was hired as a chemical engineer at the Mare Island Navy Shipyard with a career that spanned 42 years in the field of rubber science working on submarines. Known as the "Quiet Man", Barry headed the Quality Assurance Rubber Engineering Laboratory and received numerous awards and recognition for his work. Apart from conducting extensive research in rubber science, Barry was also a wine maker, organic farmer, and an avid photographer. 

Quintin Calvin Johnson (06/16/19) Ph.D. ’61 Chem. Born Excelsior, Minnesota. Quintin earned his B.S. in Chemistry from St. Olaf College. He received a scholarship to attend UC Berkeley earning his Ph. D in Chemistry studying crystallography with David H. Templeton. Quintin went on to work at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory where he published over 100 research papers with his colleagues. In addition to this he received several patents and earned two R&D 100 awards. In 1980, Quintin retired to start a scientific software company which he led for the next 30 years.

Ray Kaplan (08/05/19) POSTDOC Chem. Born New York, New York. Ray came to do postdoctoral work at U.C Berkeley after earning his Ph.D. in Physics from Columbia University. Ray was part of the American Physical society for many years along with association in various political civil right organizations. He worked as a professor at Cooper Union; Fordham University, SUNY Maritime College in New York, and Pace in Westchester County. He also owned and operated residential real estate in New York.

Oscar Harold Krikorian  (03/19/2019) Ph.D. ’55 Chem. Born Fresno, CA. Oscar graduated from Fresno State College in 1952 with a B.S. in inorganic chemistry. Married his wife Marilyn in 1953 and they relocated to Berkeley, CA. In 1955, Oscar obtained his Ph.D. in High Temperature Chemistry from the UC Berkeley. He began his remarkable career with two years at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, followed by 52 years at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory as a High Temperature Chemist in the field of Material Science. Oscar's work took him around the globe, speaking on his latest research at international science conferences. His colleagues described Oscar as an "outstanding theorist and experimentalist." He obtained many patents through the Department of Energy, some in his own name and others in collaboration with other scientist partners. He retired in 2006.

Whitney Elmore Lawrence  (03/05/2019) B.S. '41 Chem. Born Santa Rosa, CA. Whitney was a graduate of Fresno State College and UC Berkeley with a B.S. in Chemistry in 1941. He was a Member of the Glee Club and of Chi Pi Sigma, Chemistry Honor Society; and a Chemical Aid in the Department of Agriculture. After he graduated he was employed with Griffin Chemical Company, as a Plant Engineer; Nopco Chemical Company, as an Assistant Plant Manager; and U.S. Peroxygen, a subsidiary of Argus, a Division of Whitco Chemical, as a Process Development Engineer, all in Richmond, California. After retirement, he was Self-Employed as a Safety Consultant for Witco Chemical Corporation, U.S. Peroxygen Division for 32 contracts. He was also employed as an Emergency Teacher for the Klamath-Trinity School District for K-12 grades.

Harley M. McCamish (08/28/19) B.S ’48 ChemE. Born Fresno, California. After graduating from high school, Harley joined the Navy and was stationed at Horsham, PA. When the war was over he received a B.S in Chemical engineering at UC Berkeley. After graduation, he moved to Karachi, Pakistan to manage the construction of a natural gas pipeline. In 1961 Harley returned to the US and began working at Bechtel located in San Francisco. He relocated with his family in 1964 to New Delhi, India to help construct a pipeline that extended from China to India. Before retiring Harley served as the Corporate Vice president of Bechtel Pipeline, in the oil and energy division. He funded an endowment at UC Berkeley in support of young, deserving engineering students. He remained a loyal-alumni throughout his lifetime.

Charles Waymond Merideth (11/19/19) Ph.D. ’65 Chem. Born Atlanta, Georgia. Charles completed his undergraduate education at Morehouse College with a B.S in chemistry and mathematics. In the summer he then began working as a research scientist for Lockheed Martin in Atlanta turning down many major league baseball contracts that were lined up for him. That same year he moved to Berkeley for graduate school and earned his Ph.D. in Physical Chemistry. After graduation, Charles completed his postdoc at the University of Illinois and began working. Throughout his life time Charles received numerous awards and distinctions and had a passion for ensuring equal access and opportunities in science and mathematics for minority students. Charles was the Director of the Atlanta University Center Dual Degree Engineering Degree Program. He then went on to become the Provost and eventually the Chancellor of the Atlanta University Center and retired as President of New York City College of technology.

Roger C. Millikan (Professor Emeritus, UC Santa Barbara Chemistry and Biochemistry) (09/09/19) Ph.D. ’57 Chem. Born Tiffin, Ohio. Roger began his higher-level education at Oberlin College where he earned a B.S and then attended U.C Berkeley for his Ph.D. in Chemistry. Roger began his career as a research chemist for General Electric Co. in Schenectady. He stayed for ten years and then moved to Santa Barbra where he became a professor of chemistry at U.C Santa Barbara. After he retired he took up bird photography including the co-publication of several regional books about birds.

John Robert Morton III (08/25/19) Ph.D. ’61 Chem. Born Palestine, Texas. John graduated from the University of Alabama with a B.S in Chemistry. He then began working at Hanford General Electric and joined the army. His army career included both two years of active duty and sixteen years in the reserves. While in the army, John enrolled at U.C Berkeley and eared his Ph.D. in Nuclear Chemistry. After completing his degree, he worked at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory where he held a variety of positions until his retirement in 1991.

Louie A. Nady (7/29/19) B.S ’63 ChemE.; M.S.’ 65 ChemE.; Ph.D.’70 ChemE. Born Hungary. Louie immigrated to the U.S. moving to San Francisco at the age of nine with his family. After graduating from high school, he attended UC Berkeley where he earned his B.S, M.S, and Ph.D. in chemical engineering. He studied sailing while at Berkeley igniting a life-long passion for the sport. Louie started his 32-year professional career with Stauffer Chemical Company in Richmond, California. For much of his career his responsibilities were Process Technology for North America. He retired in 2002 from Syngenta where his last position was Global Chemical Development Strategist.

William Charles Powers Jr(link is external). (03/10/2019) B.A. '67 Chem. Born Los Angeles, CA. William was the second-longest-serving president in University of Texas Austin’s (UT) history, holding the post for more than nine years until he stepped down in June 2015. In addition to serving as president, he was a member of the School of Law faculty for more than 40 years, including six as dean. Among his many accomplishments as the second-longest-serving president in UT’s history, he oversaw the establishment of two of UT’s 18 colleges and schools and the successful completion of a $3 billion capital campaign, the largest ever undertaken at a public university in Texas. He also presided over the completion or construction of 13 major buildings that changed the face of the campus.

Rosemary Ragen (07/16/19) B.A ’50 Chem. Born Oakland, California. Rosemary attended UC Berkeley and graduated in 1950 earning a B.A in Chemistry being one of only two women to earn a degree in Chemistry that year. Rosemary began working as a chemist for Dow Chemical. She later went back to university to earn a teaching degree and worked for 20 years in Castro Valley as a high school chemistry teacher. In addition to her long career as a teacher, Rosemary was also a full-time mom to her three daughters.

Elizabeth Anne Rauscher (07/03/19) B.S’62 Chem, M.S ’65 NuclE, Ph.D.’79 Chem. Born Berkeley, California. Elizabeth’s interest in science began in high school as she had already begun to hang around the Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory. Elizabeth attended UC Berkeley where she completed both her undergraduate and graduate degrees. After completing her M.S. degree, she became a researcher at the Stanford Research Institute in the Radio Physics Laboratory. She went on to work at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory and returned to UC Berkeley and pursued her Ph.D. under Glen Seaborg in nuclear chemistry.  Additionally, she started and chaired the Livermore Philosophy Group, offering classes on the relationship between science and society at Berkeley, and later at the Stanford Linear Accelerator Center. After earning her Ph.D. in 1978, she worked as a physics professor at John F. Kennedy University. She went on to work at NASA as a research consultant and also at the University of Nevada as a graduate student advisor in the department of physics. Elizabeth lived a stem driven life and was constantly seeking knowledge.

John Thomas Reilly (07/26/19) B.S ’85 ChemE. Born Palo Alto, California. John attended UC Berkeley as a transfer student graduating with a B.S in Chemical Engineering. After acquiring an MBA, John began working in high tech sales at KLA Tenor. He worked in high-teach sales for 33 years concluding with his final position at Dell doing OEM sales. John enjoyed the blues and spending time with his family.

Peter R. Rony (09/20/19) Ph.D. ’65 ChemE. Born Paris, France. Peter and his family moved to Hollywood, California from Paris where he grew up and finished high school. After high school Peter earned his B.S in chemical engineering from Caltech in 1959. He then attended UC Berkeley where he earned a Ph.D. in chemical engineering. Peter began his career at Monsanto and Exxon. He went on to a career as an associate professor at Virginia Polytechnic Institute in 1971 and retired in 2002. Throughout his career Peter was an essential member of the AlChE Process Systems Division and was known for his “Bugbook” series. He taught short courses all over the world teaching people how to used digital electronic integrated circuits.

Albert J. Rothman(link is external) (12/11/2018) Ph.D. ’54 ChemE. Born Brooklyn, NY. Albert received a B.S. in Chemical Engineering at Columbia University, made possible by a Pulitzer Scholarship, and was awarded an M.S. at Brooklyn Polytechnic. He went to work at American Cyanamid and started his family. He completed his Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering at UC Berkeley and pursued a career as a Research Engineer at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory until his retirement in 1986.

John Anthony Smeagal(link is external) (02/01/2019) Ph.D. ’83 Chem. Born Farrell, PA. At a young age, John fell in love with chemistry and inspired by his high school chemistry teacher went on to earn a B.S. degree at Penn State University in 1978 and a Ph.D. in Inorganic Chemistry at UC Berkeley in 1983. After a post-doctoral appointment at Princeton University, he joined the Shell Development Company in the Catalysis Department in Houston, TX in 1985. John enjoyed a very fulfilling and successful 30 year career at Shell where he developed more than twenty catalysts for use in the refining and petrochemical industry and received more than thirty patents worldwide. 

Jerome Francis Suida (05/31/19) POSTDOC Chem. Born Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Jerome began his higher education in Villanova University where he earned both his B.S and M.S in Chemistry. He earned his Ph.D. at the University of Virginia. After completing his post-doctoral work at UC Berkeley, Jerome returned to Pennsylvania and became a professor in the Department of Medicinal/Pharmaceutical Chemistry at the University of Pittsburg for thirty years.

Jerome F. Thomas (11/07/19) Ph.D. ’50 Chem. Born Chicago, Illinois. Jerome graduated with a B.S in chemistry and then enrolled in the Navy. He graduated from Midshipman’s school at Notre Dame University and became an engineering officer on the LST 991 in the South Pacific. Jerome was sent to Berkeley by the navy, served in WWII, then came back to Berkeley to continue his education. Jerome eventually earned his Ph.D. in Physical Organic Chemistry. After graduating, he began work as a faculty member in the university and served as the chairman of the environmental division of the Civil and Environmental Department. In addition to his work as a professor, he was a Licensed Professional Engineer. He worked on civil engineering problems such as corrosion, fire, explosions and plastics and published more than 100 technical papers. In 1987 he became Professor Emeritus.

James Ying-Peh Tong (09/24/19) B.S ’50 Chem. M.S ’51 Chem. Born Shanghai, China. Three years after James immigrated to the U.S., he was accepted into UC Berkeley completing a B.S and M.S in chemistry. He went on to receive his Ph.D. at the University of Wisconsin. After completing postdoctoral work, James became a Professor of Chemistry at Ohio University. He founded the Ohio University’s Forensic Program because of his belief that there needed to be more specialized chemists in crime and investigative laboratories. H also started a program called Women in Science and Engineering (WISE) to encourage girls and young women to pursue degrees in science by introducing them to possible career paths with those degrees. Among his many honors, he was awarded the Red Cross Home Town Hero award in Education.

C. Wheaton Vaughan (02/12/2019) Ph.D. ’55 Chem. Born New York, NY. Wheaton graduated from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and earned his Ph.D. in theoretical organic chemistry and molecular physics from the University of California, Berkeley. He also received an MBA from Harvard Business School. Wheaton followed his passion for invention and worked for DuPont in a research and development laboratory. In later years, he worked in corporate finance and was a partner in a real estate investment firm.

Thomas Louis Westman (07/15/19) Ph.D. ’61 Chem. Born Herndon, Kansas. After perusing an undergraduate degree at the University of Washington, Thomas attended UC Berkeley where he earned his Ph.D. in chemistry. Thomas worked in a range of fields including teaching, industry, and medical and pharmaceuticals. For a time, he worked as an administrator for the mathematics and science courses for the University of Washington. Later in life, he pursued a career as a seasonal backcountry ranger; search and rescue technician; and a wildland firefighter for the National Park Service at Mount Rainier National Park.

Rita Wieland (06/13/19) B.S ’46 Chem. Born San Francisco, California. Rita graduated from Lowell High school then attended U.C Berkeley. She graduated in 1946, being part of the very small percentage of women at the time who graduated with science degrees. She worked as a chemist for the Shell Development Company. Outside of work, Rita was also part of several organizations including the Mt. Diablo Ski club and The Sierra Club.

Lee Wong (05/29/19) B.S ’56 Chem. Born Corning, California. After serving time in the army during the Korean war, Lee attended U.C Berkeley. He graduated in 1956 with a B.S in Chemistry, becoming the first person in his family to graduate with a university degree. He spent his 35-year career as a chemist at the Mare Island Naval Shipyard. Apart from his long career, he enjoyed working on cars and sharing his automobile knowledge.

Stanley Wong (12/18/2018) B.S. ’59 Chem (Ph.D. UCSF). Born Watsonville, CA. Stanely received his B.S. in Chemistry from UC Berkeley and his PH.D.from UCSF. He was employed as a Kaiser Hospital pharmacist for 40 years.

This list was last updated December 2019.