University obituaries

Recent faculty, staff, and alumni obituaries.

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Faculty and Staff

Gary S. Becker, AM’53, PhD’55, University Professor of economics and of sociology, died May 3 in Chicago. He was 83. A widely influential pioneer in the field of social economics, Becker received the Sveriges Riksbank Prize in Economic Sciences in Memory of Alfred Nobel in 1992 for his work applying microeconomic analysis to human behavior. In 2007 he was awarded the nation’s highest civilian honor, the Presidential Medal of Freedom, by President George W. Bush. Becker and his mentor, Milton Friedman, AM’33, were the only economists to receive both the Nobel Memorial Prize and the Medal of Freedom. The University’s Becker Friedman Institute for Research in Economics is named in their honor. Becker’s work was also recognized with the John Bates Clark Medal, National Medal of Science, and University of Chicago Alumni Medal. His books include The Economics of Discrimination (1957), Human Capital (1964), and A Treatise on the Family (1981). He is survived by his wife, Guity Nashat Becker, PhD’73; two daughters, Catherine Jean Becker, LAB’74, AB’79, and Judy S. Becker, LAB’73; two stepsons, Michael S. C. Claffey, LAB’78, AB’84, and Cyrus C. Claffey, LAB’82, MBA’96; a sister; two grandchildren, Henry B. Harboe, LAB’11, and Louis Harboe, LAB’14; and two step-grandchildren, current Lab students Michael D. Claffey and Colin Claffey. [For more, see ‟Human Capitalist” and ‟A Theory of the Allocation of a Nobelist’s Time.”—Ed.]

Donald J. Bogue, professor emeritus of sociology and research associate at the Population Research Center, died April 21 in Dyer, IN. He was 96. One of the nation’s leading demographers, Bogue studied topics including migration, family planning, communication, and demographic methodology, publishing dozens of books, monographs, and reports. He founded Demography, the journal of the Population Association of America, and served as its first editor. In 2011 Bogue was named laureate of the International Union for the Scientific Study of Population and was honored by the Population Association of America, of which he was a past president. He is survived by two daughters, Edith Bogue, LAB’69, AM’81, and Gretchen Maguire, LAB’73, and four grandchildren.

Jacques Ovadia, professor emeritus of radiology, of Chicago, died April 19. He was 90. The first chair of the Department of Medical Physics at Michael Reese Hospital, Ovadia also served as president of the American Association of Physics in Medicine. He is survived by his wife, Florence; a daughter, Corinne Ovadia, LAB’75; a son, Marc Ovadia, LAB’76, AB’80; four grandchildren; and a great-grandchild.

1930s

Richard J. Ketterer, SB’37, died April 2 in Burnt Hills, NY. He was 98. Early in Ketterer’s career as a chemist, his research contributed to the development of plastics used in eyeglasses and canopies for US military planes. He was granted eight patents during his career, including several for mica paper laminates, used to insulate electronics. He is survived by two sons, five grandchildren, and three great-grandchildren.

Robert N. Baumgartner, AB’35, AM’47, died December 3 in Santa Cruz, CA. He was 99. A WW II Army veteran, Baumgartner taught English and drama before working as the librarian at Granite Hills High School in El Cajon, CA, from 1960 to 1985. He also helped found the Family School in La Mesa, CA. Survivors include a son, four grandchildren, and two great-grandchildren.

1940s

Shirley (Latham) Rinder, SB’42, of Burr Ridge, IL, died April 21. She was 93. Following her graduation from the College, Rinder worked at the University in numerous roles, including as an assistant to Chancellor Robert Maynard Hutchins and President Lawrence A. Kimpton. She is survived by her husband, George Rinder, LAB’37, EX’41, MBA’42; a daughter; two sons; seven grandchildren; and three great-grandchildren.

Elizabeth (Plasman) Cook, AB’44, died December 12 in Towson, MD. She was 90. After moving to Wyoming with her husband in 1965, Cook helped to establish Wind River Native Crafts, a cooperative owned by Native American artisans. In later years, she worked with her husband and son in the family’s computer consulting business in Maryland. Survivors include a daughter; three sons, including Stephen Kennedy Cook, AB’72; and three grandchildren.

Mary Helen (Augustine) Swanson, SB’45, of Lincoln, NE, died March 12. She was 90. A former staff lecturer at the Field Museum in Chicago, Swanson later served as the assistant dean of women at the University of Nebraska–Lincoln. She was a trustee of the University of Nebraska Foundation and a deacon and elder at Westminster Presbyterian Church. Survivors include a daughter and two granddaughters.

Gerald Stechler, PhB’46, died December 18 in Lexington, MA. He was 85. A WW II veteran, Stechler was an influential psychologist who spent his career as a professor at the Boston University School of Medicine. He cofounded and led the Massachusetts Institute for Psychoanalysis and the Psychoanalytic Couple and Family Institute of New England. He is survived by his wife, Antonia Halton; two daughters; a sister; four grandchildren; and a great-granddaughter.

Philip Baum, JD’48, died March 27 in Riverdale, NY. He was 94. A WW II veteran, Baum joined the American Jewish Congress soon after earning his law degree and served in senior positions at the organization for more than five decades, retiring as executive director in 2002. He organized the American-Israeli Dialogue, an annual conference in Israel that convened Jewish intellectual leaders from both countries. He is survived by his wife, Bette.

Bert “Bud” Rabinowitz, MBA’48, died April 15 in Antigua. He was 88. A successful entrepreneur, he spent many years as a philanthropist after selling his meat processing plant, Colonial Provision Company. Rabinowitz volunteered for the Combined Jewish Philanthropies and the United Jewish Appeal and also served as chair of the Myers-JDC-Brookdale Institute, an Israeli center for applied research on social policy. Survivors include his wife, Constance; two daughters; a son; and four grandsons.

Natalie (Margolin) Rome, PhB’48, MBA’50, died December 19 in Charlton, MA. She was 85. Rome began her career at the New York advertising agency Kenyon & Eckhardt and later worked as director of Marcraft Realty in Massachusetts. A classical music enthusiast, Rome was also a d champion. She is survived by two daughters, a son, and two grandsons.

William “Billy” H. Samuels, PhB’48, AB’54, of Scottsdale, AZ, died April 11. He was 85. A longtime mortgage banker in Chicago, Samuels retired with his wife, Suzanne, to Arizona in the mid-1990s. He had a lifelong interest in the Civil War. Survivors include his wife, three sons, and seven grandchildren.

Donald Edwin Funk, SB’44, died December 24 in Willow Grove, PA. He was 91. A WW II Army Air Corps veteran, Funk practiced law for more than six decades, retiring in 2012. An avid traveler, he visited more than 40 countries. Survivors include his wife, Dorothy; a daughter; a son; and a grandson.

Rita (Peisner) Bornstein, AM’48, of Longwood, FL, died November 18. She was 88. A leader in her local Jewish community, Bornstein served as vice president for education for Hadassah, chair of education for the Jewish Federation of Greater Orlando, and vice president of education for Temple Israel, where she also taught Sabbath school. Bornstein helped found Head Start in Orlando and the Hebrew Day School of Central Florida. Survivors include a daughter, a son, five grandchildren, and two great-grandchildren. Her husband, Jerome J. Bornstein, AB’47, JD’49, died in 1992.

Joy (Kopp) Goforth, AM’48, died January 28, 2013, in Pensacola, FL. She was 91. After serving in the US Naval Reserve during WW II, Goforth worked for the federal government at posts in Germany, Japan, Turkey, and Washington, DC. Survivors include eight nieces and nephews.

1950s

Charles Sumner Stone Jr., AM’51, died April 6 in Chapel Hill, NC. He was 89. A member of the Tuskegee Airmen during WW II, Stone served as an adviser to US representative Adam Clayton Powell and was the first black columnist hired by the Philadelphia Daily News. A founder of the National Association of Black Journalists, he taught journalism at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Survivors include two daughters, a son, two sisters, and a granddaughter.

Alfred S. Dale Jr., DB’52, of Bellingham, WA, died March 3. He was 87. An Army paratrooper and chaplain, Dale also served as a minister at United Methodist churches in Illinois, California, and Washington, and as a missionary in Poland and Fiji. He was active in peace and social justice organizations and helped to found Bellingham Friends of Cuba. He is survived by his wife, Dorothy Pikas Dale, EX’49; a daughter, Ana K. Gobledale, AM’77; two sons; and two grandchildren, including Thandiwe A. Gobledale, MDiv’13.

Thomas W. Yoder, JD’52, of Fort Wayne, IN, died April 2. He was 86. A veteran of the Army Air Force, he had a long career at Livingston, Dildine, Haynie, and Yoder (now Carson Boxberger LLP), where he worked as a trial lawyer specializing in insurance defense litigation and public utility law. Yoder was an avid sports fan and a volunteer who served Indiana professional, civic, and charitable organizations including the State Bar Association and the Visiting Nurse Service. Survivors include his wife, Marilyn; two daughters; a son; two stepchildren; a sister; two grandchildren; six step-grandchildren; and a step-great-grandchild.

Lino John David Agosti, MBA’53, died November 10 in Anchorage, AK. He was 93. After serving as an Army paratrooper during WW II, Agosti moved to Alaska with his family in 1959 to become manager of Northwest Airlines’ flight-kitchen operations. He later helped found a commercial appliance sales and repair company now run by his sons. A devout Catholic, he volunteered in a number of faith-based organizations. Survivors include three daughters; four sons; a sister; 19 grandchildren, including Amy Woodruff, AB’12; and two great-grandchildren.

Stanley John Heywood, AM’52, PhD’54, died February 21 in Tucson, AZ. He was 88. An expert in higher education, Heywood served on the board of the American Association of State Colleges and Universities and completed several overseas assignments for the US Information Service. He was president of Montana State University for ten years, retiring from that institution as professor emeritus of education. Survivors include his wife, Shirley; two sons; a stepdaughter; four stepsons; five grandchildren; nine step-grandchildren; and six step-great-grandchildren. His first wife, Joan Olive (Murton) Heywood, AB’53, died in 1995.

Daniel Greenberg, SM’49, died April 17 in Upper Makefield Township, PA. He was 86. Greenberg worked with Enrico Fermi in the Physical Sciences Division before spending most of his career at the National Distillers & Chemical Corporation, from which he retired as director of research. He is survived by a daughter, two sons, and four grandchildren.

Schuyler C. Johnson, MBA’55, died February 21 in Atco, NJ. He was 89. Johnson served in the US Marine Corps during WW II and the Korean War and spent 35 years as an industrial engineer for the Campbell Soup Company in Chicago; Paris, TX; and Camden, NJ. He is survived by three daughters, two sons, and six grandchildren.

Conrad V. Schmitt, MBA’55, of Edina, MN, died March 29. He was 86. A Korean War veteran, Schmitt had a long career in the health care industry; he was the founder of a substance abuse rehabilitation center in Minnesota and a health maintenance organization in Arizona. Survivors include a daughter and three grandchildren.

Michael A. Robins, AB’56, of Santa Fe, NM, died November 4. He was 76. An art dealer with particular interest in pre-Columbian, Chinese, African, and contemporary art, Robins was a voracious reader and loved to travel. He is survived by his wife, Maureen, and a son.

Mary Lucinda “Cindy” Sangree, AM’56, died February 23 in Rochester, NY. She was 82. Teaching sociology at SUNY Geneseo, Sangree also served as a research associate at the University of Rochester and was a longtime peace activist and a published poet. She is survived by her partner, Marge Forth; two daughters; a brother; a granddaughter; and her partner’s daughter, son, and grandchildren.

Howard Leslie Bresler, MD’57, of Skokie, IL, died January 27. He was 82. After a long career in medicine that included serving as a research fellow at the American Heart Association and as chair of the Department of Family Practice at the University of Illinois, Bresler embarked on a second career as a master gardener at the Chicago Botanic Garden. He is survived by his wife, Ruth; a daughter; a son, Michael Evan Bresler, MD’88; a brother; and six grandchildren.

Willard J. Visek, MD’57, of Champaign, IL, died March 31. He was 91. A WW II veteran, Visek was an assistant professor of pharmacology at UChicago early in his career. He later taught at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, from which he retired as professor emeritus of internal medicine in 1993. Editor of the Journal of Nutrition, Visek received the Osborne and Mendel Award from the American Institute of Nutrition for his research in ammonia and protein metabolism in 1985 and the Medical and Biological Alumni Association’s Distinguished Service Award in 1997. Survivors include his wife, Priscilla; two daughters; a son; and six grandchildren.

Douglas E. Sturm, DB’53, PhD’59, of Lewisburg, PA, died April 27. He was 85. A longtime professor at Bucknell University, Sturm also served in leadership roles at the Society of Christian Ethics and was one of the founders of the Journal of Law and Religion. He authored two books and edited Belonging Together: Faith and Politics in a Relational World (2003). He is survived by his wife, Margie (Anderson) Sturm, AM’57; two sons; and a grandson.

Donald W. Bowry, MBA’57, died November 23 in Walpole, NH. He was 93. Bowry served in the Air Force for 32 years, commanding a B-29 during WW II. He was a three-time recipient of the Legion of Merit and a two-time Distinguished Flying Cross recipient. He is survived by his wife, Jane; three daughters; two sisters; six grandchildren; and nine great-grandchildren.

1960s

Donald E. Goldstone, MD’61, died March 1 in Washington, DC. He was 77. Goldstone headed the Peace Corps medical program in Latin America before helping shape national health care policy at the National Center for Health Services Research during three presidential administrations and as a member of the federal Senior Executive Service. As part of the SES, he directed data collection and analysis for the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. He is survived by his wife, Martha; three sons; a stepmother; a brother; and three grandsons.

Miriam (Kovner) Ringo, AM’61, of Burr Ridge, IL, died March 19. She was 95. A labor economist who began her career at the US Department of Labor, Ringo later worked for Inland Steel and for the State of Illinois, from which she retired as director of operations for the Speaker of the Illinois House. She was the author of Nobody Said It Better (1980). Survivors include a daughter, two sons, and five grandchildren. Her husband, G. Roy Ringo, SB’36, PhD’40, died in 2008.

Stuart Lessing Weiss, PhD’61, died March 21 in Las Vegas, NV. He was 82. Weiss taught American history at Southern Illinois University, Edwardsville, for 25 years, establishing a scholarship fund there for disadvantaged students. His publications include two books, The President’s Man: Leo Crowley and Franklin Roosevelt in Peace and War (1996), and The Curt Flood Story: The Man Behind the Myth (2007). He is survived by his wife, Rita; four daughters; a son; a sister; four grandchildren; and two great-grandchildren.

Elliot Wayne Eisner, AM’58, PhD ’62, died January 10 in Stanford, CA. He was 80. Eisner was Lee Jacks emeritus professor of education and art at Stanford, where he taught for 42 years. His scholarly interests included art education, educational criticism, curriculum development, qualitative research methodologies, and school reform; he wrote 17 books and hundreds of articles, book chapters, reports, and presentations. Survivors include his wife, Ellie; a daughter; a son; and three grandsons.

Selgene Balaban, MBA’64, of Scottsdale, AZ, died March 23. He was 91. A WW II Army veteran, Balaban spent his career as an electrical engineer and retired as the owner of Maxtec International Corporation/Telemotive Industrial Controls. He also served as president of the Materials Handling Institute, a national trade association. He is survived by his wife, Anita Myra; two daughters; a son; three grandchildren; and three great-grandchildren.

1970s

Gary Marshall Melberg, MBA’71, of Chicago, died March 13. He was 73. Melberg worked as a mechanical engineer for several years before earning his business degree and going on to diverse roles in health care, executive recruiting, and academia. He retired from the Chicago Transit Authority in 1999 after serving as its director of management development. Survivors include his wife, Laura Lee; three daughters, including Karin A. Melberg, MBA’11, and Karissa Annette McDonough, AB’95; and two sisters.

Joseph A. Gump, MBA’74, died March 8 in Bloomingdale, MI. He was 86. A longtime social activist, Gump founded a chapter of the anti-nuclear-war protest movement Plowshares Action Group; he and his wife, Jean, a fellow activist, were profiled in Studs Terkel’s (PhB’32, JD’34) 1988 book, The Great Divide. For 20 years, Gump volunteered as a tax preparer for the elderly. Survivors include his wife; seven daughters, including Mary Patricia Gump, AB’73, JD’76, Holly Gump, AB’83, and Elizabeth Mary Gump, AM’90; three sons; a brother, Raymond Gump, MBA’73; a sister; 15 grandchildren; and two great-grandchildren.

Harold “Joe” Pletcher, MBA’74, died February 24 in Naperville, IL. He was 82. A Korean War Army veteran, Pletcher spent 35 years in the banking industry, eventually overseeing five golf course communities in the southern United States for First Chicago Bank. After retiring in 1990, he founded a real estate management consulting firm that he ran until 2005. He is survived by his wife, Faye; a daughter; a brother; and two grandchildren.

Paul Stanley Castleman, MBA’76, of Dayton, OH, died April 4. He was 73. A Vietnam-era veteran, he began his business career with positions at commercial baking companies Bluebird and Chicago Pastry and went on to spend 26 years in the banking industry, serving as vice president of several banks. He was a three-term city council member in Oakwood, OH. Survivors include his wife, Maria; a daughter; and a son.

Thomas Joseph Lopina Sr., MBA’77, died April 1 in Winston-Salem, NC. He was 76. He began his career as a certified public accountant with Ernst & Ernst (later Ernst & Young) and served as president of Graveley Inc., a North Carolina manufacturer of commercial landscaping equipment. Survivors include his wife, Roma; six sons; a brother, Lawrence T. Lopina, MBA’63; 20 grandchildren; and two great-grandsons.

1980s

William T. Boos, PhD’81, died April 1 in Iowa City, IA. He was 71. He taught mathematics for several years before earning his PhD in philosophical logic and going on to teach philosophy at institutions in the United States, Denmark, and Canada. A classical music enthusiast, Boos studied foreign languages including Greek, Danish, and Icelandic. He is survived by his wife, Florence, and a son.

Joseph Lederhaas, MBA’83, of Punta Gorda, FL, died April 3. He was 75. He earned his UChicago degree after retiring as a captain in the US Navy and went on to a career as a human resources executive and consultant. Survivors include his wife, Catherine; a daughter; a son; two brothers; two granddaughters; and two step-grandsons.

Glenn Allen Norem, MBA’83, died of pancreatic cancer October 21 in Austin, TX. He was 61. An Army veteran, Norem was a technology entrepreneur who began his career in product and business development and venture capital. The cofounder of companies that manufacture streaming video hardware and security equipment, he served on the board of directors of TechAmerica, a national association of technology companies. He is survived by his wife, Zoe Adams; a daughter; a son; a stepdaughter; his parents; three brothers; and a sister.

Steven Francis Crowley, AB’85, of Delano, MN, died April 11 in an automobile accident. He was 50. Crowley spent nearly three decades working in the investment industry as a health care and technology analyst. He and his family raised horses on their farm in Delano; he was also a wine collector and sports fan. Survivors include his wife, Anne; a daughter; two sons; his parents; and a stepfather.

Alvin “Al” Charles Skat Jr., MBA’82, of Elmhurst, IL, died of pancreatic cancer December 23. He was 63. A mechanical engineer, Skat designed products from barcode printers to automobile switches. He is survived by his wife, Sandra Brown Skat; two daughters; two granddaughters; a brother; and a sister.

1990s

Howard Craig Mitzel, PhD’91, of Seaside, CA, died of cancer January 19. He was 62. Mitzel was an expert in psychometrics and cognitive psychology who developed a number of software programs used in educational testing. He founded the Pacific Metrics Corporation, which creates web-based student assessment systems, and held three patents, the most recent of which was granted in 2013 for a plagiarism detection program. Survivors include his mother and a sister. 

Lindsey Wells Powell, AM’92, died of complications from a stroke February 19 in Louisville, KY. He was 47. An assistant professor of anthropology at Western Kentucky University, Powell directed a summer field school in Tokyo for several years and was an accomplished ethnographic filmmaker who had worked as a video producer and film archivist/projectionist at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. He is survived by his wife, Chunmei Du; a son; his parents; a brother, Smith Thompson Powell IV, AB’85, MBA’90; a sister; three stepbrothers; and a stepsister.

2000s

Andrew Lawrence Gadzinski, MBA’07, of Chicago, died April 11 after a long fight with cancer. He was 47. A financial trader, Gadzinski was a seated member of the Chicago Board of Trade and the founder of ABG Investment Group, a discount trading company with operations in the United States, Asia, and Europe. He was a longtime supporter of the Special Olympics. He is survived by his mother and two sisters.

Laura Anne Sullivan LaPlante, a third-year law student, died May 2 in an automobile accident in Chicago. She was 26. Active in campus organizations including the Federalist Society, the Law School Republicans, and the Dean of Students’ Advisory Board, LaPlante was also a member of the St. Thomas More Society and the Law Women’s Caucus. She worked at WilmerHale LLC in Boston last summer and planned to return in the fall. Among the survivors are her parents, two brothers, a sister, and three grandparents.

Kathleen Bohanon, a fourth-year student in the College, died May 8 in Bakersfield, CA. She was 21. A biological chemistry major, Bohanon was part of the 2012–13 Beckman Scholars Program, which funds undergraduate laboratory work; she researched proteins in mammalian brain tissue. A member of the Kappa Alpha Theta sorority and of Phi Beta Kappa, Bohanon was an accomplished swimmer and violinist. She is survived by her parents.

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