University of Chicago obituaries

Recent faculty, staff, and alumni obituaries.

Faculty and staff

Ursula B. Storb, professor emerita of molecular genetics and cell biology, of Chicago, died December 15. She was 87. A prominent B-cell biologist and immunologist, Storb was best known for her work on regulating immunoglobulin gene rearrangement and somatic hypermutation—a process by which genes mutate in an immune system response to external threats, and which has been linked to cancers like B-cell lymphomas. Storb earned her medical degree at schools in Germany and Austria, coming to UChicago in 1986 after 18 years at the University of Washington in Seattle, where she was head of the Department of Microbiology and Immunology. A valued mentor to women and other underrepresented students in science, she was present at the founding of the Association for Women in Science. In her 29-plus years at UChicago, she taught courses on immunology, molecular biology, vertebrate developmental genetics, and cell biology until her retirement in 2015. Storb is survived by two sisters and a brother.

Julie Saville, associate professor emerita in the Department of History and the College, of Chicago, died December 16. She was 76. A historian of slavery, emancipation, and plantation societies, Saville joined the UChicago faculty in 1994 and was a founding scholar of the Center for the Study of Race, Politics, and Culture. Educated at Brandeis University and Yale, she held previous appointments at the University of Maryland and the University of California, San Diego. Her scholarship, including the 1994 book The Work of Reconstruction: From Slave to Wage Laborer in South Carolina, 1860–1870, demonstrated how everyday life, labor, and culture shaped large-scale processes of enslavement and freedom in the United States and across the Atlantic world. Survivors include her sister.


Lois Wenk Cohodas, LAB’35, SB’39, died May 18, 2023, in San Antonio. She was 105. Cohodas and her late husband married in 1939 and lived in small towns in Wisconsin and Michigan where she was a homemaker, volunteer, and supporter of the arts. They wintered in Sarasota, FL, for six decades before moving to San Antonio 10 years ago. She is survived by two daughters, four grandchildren, and nine great-grandchildren.


Rachel (MacHatton) Carlton, SB’44, of Bridlington, England, died January 18. She was 100. Carlton studied music and human physiology in the College; while in Chicago, she attended lectures by Igor Stravinsky and a concert by Sergei Rachmaninoff, and she performed in the premiere of John Cage’s Imaginary Landscape No. 3. Moving to the UK, she worked in pharmaceutical research and development and, later, as a fashion buyer for her husband’s family’s department store. After her husband’s death in 1968, Carlton worked for an accounting firm. In retirement she earned a fine arts degree and pursued painting, sculpture, and music. She is survived by five children, nine grandchildren, and three great-grandchildren.

Dorothy (Berkowitz) Friedman, AB’45, of Sacramento, CA, died January 10, 2023. She was 98. Friedman worked as a nursery-school teacher until age 72 and loved reading until the end of her life. She is survived by three daughters and two grandchildren, including Daniele Caratelli, AB’15.

Lee Chevlen Kanner, SB’46, PhD’63, of Palo Alto, CA, died January 10. She was 98. Following her UChicago biochemistry training, Kanner became a postdoctoral researcher at Stanford. With her husband, Herbert Kanner, SB’43, SM’49, PhD’51, who died in 2018, she spent seven years in the UK and then returned to California, where she taught mathematics at West Valley College for the rest of her career. In retirement she tutored math students at the local Boys and Girls Club and sang in both the California Bach and the Congregational Church Oratorio Societies.


Alvin G. Burstein, AB’50, AM’58, PhD’59, of Knoxville, TN, died June 27. He was 92. A psychologist with psychoanalytic training, Burstein helped establish the first psychology department at the University of Texas at San Antonio. He went on to lead the clinical psychology training program at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, for nearly 20 years, while also seeing patients in private practice. From 2000 to 2006 he was head of the psychology department at Southeastern Louisiana University, and from 2006 to 2010 he was president of the Louisiana Conference of the American Association of University Professors. In retirement Burstein wrote fiction and a column, A Shrink at the Flicks, for the Psychology Times. Survivors include a daughter, Jessica Burstein, AM’90, PhD’98; a son; and five grandchildren.

Roger K. Graham, PhD’53, of Moorestown, NJ, died December 20. He was 94. Graham earned his undergraduate degree from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. With his doctorate in chemistry, he had a 43-year career at Rohm and Haas—now a Dow subsidiary—primarily in Bristol, PA. He held leadership positions at his community’s YMCA and sang in the choir of the First Presbyterian Church of Moorestown. With his wife, Polly (Anderson) Graham, AM’52, he traveled widely, visiting six continents. He is survived by his wife and two children.

Milagros Vélez-Martínez, AM’53, died October 27 in Corpus Christi, TX. She was 95. While pursuing her UChicago degree in social work, Vélez-Martínez lived at International House and was active in La Peña Iberoamericana, a cultural organization. She went on to practice medical social work in her native Puerto Rico. She is survived by four children, including Aixa Cintrón-Vélez, AM’86, and three grandchildren.

David Stoloff, AM’54, died May 29, 2023, in Oakland, CA. He was 91. Stoloff studied urban planning at UChicago. After two years in the Army, he worked in city, regional, and state planning positions in Tennessee; New York; Connecticut; and Washington, DC. Moving to the San Francisco Bay Area in the 1980s, he focused on housing and neighborhood redevelopment and founded what is now Satellite Affordable Housing Associates, a Berkeley nonprofit, in 1993. He also served on the Berkeley Planning Commission and chaired the Bay Area Community Services board. He is survived by his wife, Susan Klee; three children; two stepchildren; eight grandchildren; four step-grandchildren; and 25 great-grandchildren.

John Nelson “Jack” Dahle, AM’55, JD’55, of Denver, died November 1. He was 98. As a marine during World War II, Dahle saw all 36 days of combat in the regiment that landed on Iwo Jima, receiving a Purple Heart. He did undergraduate and graduate work at Dartmouth and University College Oxford before his studies at UChicago. Dahle went on to practice law in Minnesota and Colorado, spending 46 years as a civil trial lawyer with a Denver law firm. In addition to doing pro bono and volunteer work, he was active with the Sons of Norway. He is survived by three sons and his grandchildren.

Albert M. Fortier Jr., AB’55, of Brookline, MA, died March 5, 2022. He was 85. A first-generation college student, Fortier was president of student government at UChicago and later graduated from Harvard Law School. He argued several cases before the US Supreme Court and practiced as an estate planning lawyer for more than 50 years, mainly at the Boston firm Rackemann, Sawyer & Brewster. Active in local politics and community organizations, Fortier was a US Army reservist and mentor to young lawyers. He is survived by his wife, Bente; two sons; and two grandchildren, including Clare R. Fortier, Class of 2025.

Jay Ronald Baker, SB’59, SM’60, of Rockville, MD, died September 10, 2022. He was 84. Survivors include a son, two siblings, and two grandchildren.


Dennis A. Calvanese, MBA’60, CER’00, of Naples, FL, died January 19. He was 85. After attending DePaul University and Chicago Booth, Calvanese worked in the pharmaceutical information industry. As chief operating officer at IMS Health, he helped develop MIDAS, a widely used online pharmaceutical database. He is survived by his wife, Sandra; four children; one sibling; and five grandchildren.

Eric Klinger, PhD’60, died September 13 in Portland, OR. He was 90. Klinger taught psychology at the University of Minnesota Morris from 1962 to 2006 and spent two years teaching in Germany. An expert on personality and motivational theory, he authored or coauthored seven books and numerous articles, receiving a national award from the Society for Personality and Social Psychology in 2005 for his scholarly contributions. He is survived by his wife, Karla (Michelke) Klinger, AM’59; three children; and four grandchildren.

William “Bill” Goodman, AB’61, JD’64, died November 17 in Detroit. He was 83. In his long career as a human rights attorney, Goodman took on landmark cases. As legal director of the Center for Constitutional Rights, he sought justice for Guantánamo Bay prisoners after 9/11 and worked on behalf of the wrongfully convicted teens in the Central Park jogger case. In Detroit he served on the board of the Sugar Law Center for Economic and Social Justice; taught at Wayne State University Law School; and was a partner at the civil rights firm Goodman Hurwitz & James. Survivors include his partner, Susan Gzesh, AB’72; six children, including Michael Goodman, AB’91, and Jacob Hurwitz-Goodman, AB’09; a brother, Richard Goodman, JD’58; and four grandchildren.

Martha Kight Hanen Smith, AB’61, AM’62, PhD’73, of Wallingford, CT, died March 11, 2023. She was 82. At UChicago Smith sang in the Rockefeller Chapel Choir. A music historian, she researched Renaissance music in Spain and published the 1983 book The Chansonnier El Escorial IV.a.24. She taught music history and theory at the Hartt School of Music, Trinity College, and Yale University and performed with the American Music Theater Group, church choirs, and the Connecticut Opera Company. She is survived by one daughter; two sons, including Jonathan M. Hanen, SB’88; and a grandson.

Elliot Lilien, AB’61, of Carlisle, MA, died June 13. He was 84. After finishing law school at Columbia University, Lilien earned a master’s degree in teaching at Harvard. From 1965 to 2000 he taught history and social studies at Concord-Carlisle High School in Concord, MA. Head coach of the school’s fencing and tennis teams—and fencing coach for a few years at Brown and Harvard—Lilien also cofounded the high school’s teachers’ asso-ciation and a state-champion academic bowl team. Survivors include his wife, Nancy, and a sister.

T. Peter Townsend, MBA’61, of Dallas, died January 23. He was 87. A Yale graduate, Townsend began his nearly 40-year career in 1962 at what is now known as Exxon-Mobil Corporation. He held executive leadership positions in the United States, Europe, and Asia, becoming vice president of investor relations and then secretary of the corporation before his retirement in 2002. Townsend served on the boards of the Dallas and Santa Fe Operas and of the Dallas Symphony Orchestra. He is survived by his wife, Joanna; a daughter; a son; and five grandchildren.

Jerrold Granok, SB’62, SM’63, died November 28 in Durango, CO. He was 83. Granok worked as an industrial chemist at Armour before moving to Albuquerque, NM, in 1969 and embarking on a career in information technology. He spent 20 years with the Public Service Company of New Mexico, retiring as a senior consulting programmer analyst in 1997. He relocated to Pagosa Springs, CO, where the landscape fueled two of his hobbies: photography and astronomy. Survivors include two sons; a sister, Margaret Granok, AB’73; and one grandchild.

Dinah Stevenson, AB’63 (Class of 1964), AM’66, died January 23 in Hoboken, NJ. She was 81. As an English literature student at UChicago, Stevenson worked part time on the Chicago Assyrian Dictionary project, editing faculty papers. She had several publishing jobs in New York City before becoming a children’s book editor at Clarion Books, now an imprint of HarperCollins. At Clarion from 1990 to 2020, she was a keen spotter of talent who edited eight Caldecott, Newbery, and Sibert Medal–winning books and served as vice president, publisher, and editor at large. She is survived by her husband, Ben Mayo, and her sister.

Charles V. Hamilton, AM’57, PhD’64, died November 18 in Chicago. He was 94. Professor of government and political science at Columbia University from 1969 until his retirement in 1998, Hamilton is known for work that formed the intellectual backbone of the Black Power movement. Born in Oklahoma, he moved to Chicago’s South Side at age 6. As a young adult in the late 1940s, he served in the recently integrated US Army and then studied political science at Roosevelt University before his graduate studies at UChicago. With coauthor Stokely Carmichael (who changed his name later to Kwame Ture), he popularized the term “institutional racism” in Black Power: The Politics of Liberation in America (1967) and advocated for solidarity in Black communities and the development of independent Black institutions. Hamilton worked as a Democratic Party strategist and authored or coauthored over a dozen books on race and politics. Survivors include a stepdaughter.

Nell (Ellen Lowenberg) Margolis Borgeson, AB’66, AM’67, died July 28 in Boston. She was 78. Borgeson practiced law, journalism, and communications consulting while raising three daughters with her first husband, Harvey Margolis, SM’63, PhD’67, who died in 2000. Attending the Sundance Film Festival annually since 2007, she wrote and directed an award-winning short film, GPS, in her late 70s. Survivors include her husband, Gregg Borgeson; three children; three stepchildren; her mother; two brothers; and three grandchildren.

David Child Dodge III, AB’66, died January 1 in Denver. He was 79. A fourth-generation Coloradan, Dodge earned a medical degree at the University of Colorado School of Medicine and pursued a career in general medicine. He had a lifelong interest in antiquity and often spent his free time studying ancient Greek and Latin texts. He is survived by his wife, Madeleine; three sons; a brother; and four grandchildren.

Fred E. Holubow, MBA’66, of Chicago, died December 9. He was 84. A graduate of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Holubow studied finance at Chicago Booth. He became a managing partner at William Harris Investors, cofounded Pegasus Associates, held positions at Starbow Partners and Petard Risk Analysis, and served on the boards of various public companies. Passionate about photography, he also grew orchids and bonsai trees; several of his bonsai trees are in the permanent collection of the Chicago Botanic Garden. Survivors include his wife, Sandra; two children; and four grandchildren.

Oscar L. “Roy” Dube Sr., MBA’67, died October 10 in Naperville, IL. He was 91. Dube was a US Army veteran and a graduate of Clark University. He served as a diplomat attaché with the US State Department at the American Embassy in Paris from 1979 to 1983. After retiring from the US Department of Commerce in 1998, he spent winters in Fort Myers Beach, FL. Survivors include his wife, Kathleen; four children; two stepchildren; a sibling; seven grandchildren; three step-grandchildren; and three great-grandchildren.

Thomas A. Heberlein, AB’67, died January 4 in Madison, WI. He was 78. Heberlein came to the College from his hometown of Portage, WI, by way of the College’s Small School Talent Search. He became a scholar of the human dimension of environmental change, receiving his sociology doctorate from the University of Wisconsin–Madison and serving on its rural sociology faculty for over 30 years. His research focused on US hunting culture, carrying capacity, and valuation of environmental resources. His 2012 book, Navigating Environmental Attitudes, combined social psychology and environmental studies, showing how attitudes influence behavior and environmental policymaking. He is survived by his wife, Elizabeth “Betty” Thomson; a stepson; and three grandchildren.

Nancy K. Kaufmann, AM’68, died January 18 in Milwaukee. She was 82. Trained as a social worker, Kaufmann left the field in the 1970s and later started a vegetarian catering service, Small Planet Catering, on Chicago’s North Side. Certified as a teacher of English as a Second Language, she taught adults in Germany for seven years before returning to Chicago, where she volunteered at the Field Museum and learned Hindi, among other pursuits. In 2021 Kaufmann moved to Milwaukee to live with family. She is survived by a daughter, a son, and grandchildren.


Michael J. Chojnacki, MD’70, died January 20 in Albany, NY. He was 79. A graduate of Fordham University, Chojnacki became a psychiatrist after medical school. In Albany he saw patients in private practice and worked at the Veterans Affairs Medical Center for many years. He also sang in the choir at Blessed Sacrament Church. Survivors include three children, a brother, four grandchildren, and two great-grandchildren.

Chester Kisiel, PhD’74, died October 6 in Poland. He was 91. Kisiel, a graduate of Brown and Harvard, studied education at UChicago. He taught at the College of Staten Island of the City University of New York and at international schools. A translator of Polish scholarly literature, Kisiel also authored multiple novels. He is survived by his wife and son.

Eila M. Kokkinen, AM’77, of Saugerties, NY, died June 29. She was 93. As a UChicago student, Kokkinen served as art editor for the Chicago Review. In New York City she was involved with abstract impressionist art and Beat writing and became an assistant curator at the Museum of Modern Art. She received a Guggenheim Fellowship, studied the modernist painter John Graham, and held positions with MIT’s Hayden Gallery, Harvard’s Fogg Museum, and the State of New York. Moving to Woodstock, NY, she was active with art organizations. Survivors include a daughter and two grandchildren.

Hiroshi Okano, PhD’78, died January 20 in Evanston, IL. He was 85. Born and raised in Japan, Okano won a scholarship to study English and language education at a college in Missouri. With his master’s degree from Teachers College, Columbia University, and a social sciences doctorate, he taught at Showa Women’s University and Hito-tsubashi University in Tokyo, Chicago Futabakai Japanese School (which he helped establish), Evanston Township High School, and the College of Lake County. He and his family hosted many Japanese students in the United States over the years. Survivors include his wife, Kitty; two daughters; and two grandchildren.

Jacek K. Sulanowski, PhD’78, died October 18 in Falmouth, MA. He was 80. Sulanowski attended Wayne State University and served in the US Army Corps of Engineers before his doctoral studies in geology. For 30 years he taught Bridgewater State University students and led them on geology field trips throughout New England and the Maritime Provinces, retiring in 2008. A folk musician and amateur musicologist, he was a founding member of the Rum-Soaked Crooks, a sea chantey singing group. Survivors include his wife, Margaret; a son; and three siblings.

Roger Lee Hankin, MBA’79, of Mount Pleasant, SC, died of cancer July 13, 2022. He was 66. During a career in health care, Hankin focused on safety engineering and proper medical waste management, helping promote the use of tamper-resistant sharps containers and safer needles, syringes, and medication delivery systems. Hankin worked with Tyco Healthcare, Kimberly-Clark, Trilogy MedWaste, Smiths Medical, Motorola, Cardinal Health, and other companies. In retirement, he was an usher for the Charleston RiverDogs, a minor-league baseball team. Survivors include two daughters.


Bryan N. Ison, MBA’80, of Titusville, NJ, died December 16. He was 68. Raised in Saudi Arabia, the United States, and Switzerland, Ison earned his undergraduate degree at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. At Chicago Booth he gained expertise in options pricing and began his investment management career at Travelers. Moving to Merrill Lynch Asset Management, he founded the company’s Global Allocation Fund and remained at the firm until retiring as a managing director and as the senior portfolio manager of several funds. Survivors include his wife, JoEllen, and his brother.

Miriam Frances Reitz, AM’62, PhD’82, of Chicago, died December 19. She was 87. A graduate of Valparaiso University, Reitz pursued a social work career at Chicago-area agencies, including the Family Institute at Northwestern University. She established a private practice in the 1980s, working with families and couples, and coauthored a 1992 book that focused on the treatment of those involved in the “adoption triangle”—children, adoptive parents, and birth parents. A four-decade Hyde Park resident, she was active in Montgomery Place’s chapel and its race-relations group. Her husband, Klaus Baer, PhD’58, a UChicago professor of Egyptology, died in 1987. Survivors include extended family.

Michael Chavez-Reilly, AB’89, of New York City, died of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis November 27. He was 56. Chavez-Reilly earned a master’s degree in Latin American studies at Stanford and taught high school for nearly a decade before pursuing his PhD in educational sociology at New York University. As a research analyst at the American Museum of Natural History, he studied the impact of science education programs in New York City schools. He is survived by his mother and sister.


Tiffany Elizabeth Thornton, AB’95, AM’95, of Lansing, IL, died July 4. She was 49. Thornton was a lifelong writer who also studied classical piano in her youth. After completing both of her UChicago degrees in four years, she developed a program for latchkey children and students directly impacted by gun violence in Baltimore. Survivors include her father, her sister, and her brother.

Selena S. Shilad, AB’99 (Class of 2000), AM’03, died November 24 in Neptune Township, NJ, following a brief illness. She was 45. In addition to her UChicago degrees in political science and international relations, Shilad earned a master’s degree in leadership at Georgetown University. In 2007, after working as a legislative aide and adviser for political campaigns, she joined the Alliance for Aviation Across America, a nonprofit advocacy group. She lived in Washington, DC, and Ocean Grove, NJ, and traveled the country for her work as the organization’s executive director. Survivors include a daughter, her parents, and a brother.


Haotian “Tian Tian” Cai, AB’10, died December 5 in a bus accident while traveling in Egypt. She was 35. Born in China, Cai grew up in the United States; at UChicago she studied anthropology and volunteered for Peer Health Exchange. She worked for the math education nonprofit Reasoning Mind before earning a master’s degree in public health at Yale. Trained in data analysis and epidemiology, Cai worked on public health projects throughout Africa in positions with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and Doctors Without Borders. She is survived by her parents.

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