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September 2, 2008, Volume 55, No. 2

Dr. George, Biology
Dr. Johnston, GSE
Mr. Shayon, Annenberg

Dr. Yamada, SEAS
Memorial: Professor Dunfee
Memorial: Mr. Montgomery

Dr. George, Biology


Dr. Philip George, professor emeritus of biology, passed away July 21, at age 88.

A native of England, Dr. George attended Christ’s College at the University of Cambridge where he received his BA in 1940 and later a PhD in chemistry. During WWII, he worked as a researcher for the British government.

Dr. George was appointed professor of biophysical chemistry in the department of chemistry in 1955. During 1970-1971, Dr. George served as head of the Penn team at Pahlavi University in Shiraz, Iran.

He transferred to the department of biology in 1970, remaining there until his retirement in 1988. Dr. George was also director of the General Honors Program and the history and philosophy of science program (now known as the history and sociology of science department). He had also served as a volunteer at the Penn Museum.

Dr. George is survived by his children, Sarah, Emma, Simon, Hannah, and Edwin; seven grandchildren and two nieces.

Donations may be made to the Parkinson’s Disease & Movement Disorders Center, Pennsylvania Hospital, 330 S. 9th St., Philadelphia, PA 19107.


Dr. Johnston, GSE


Dr. Patricia Johnston, adjunct faculty member at the Graduate School of Education, died July 11 at age 57.

A 1987 graduate of GSE’s doctoral program, Dr. Johnston became an adjunct assistant of education in 2004. She taught in GSE’s Mid-Career Doctoral Program. In addition to her teaching duties, Dr. Johnston was an education administrator, most recently serving as assistant superintendent of curriculum and instruction for the Pennsbury School District. Previously, she was a teacher and administrator in the Centennial School District.

In addition to her doctorate, she earned a bachelor’s degree in English education from Indiana University of Pennsylvania, and a master’s degree in the psychology of reading from Temple University.

Dr. Johnston is survived by her mother, Norma; her brother, James; and a niece and two nephews.

Memorial donations may be made to Pennsbury School District for the Dr. Patricia Johnston Scholarship Fund, Financial Services Office, 134 Yardley Ave., Fallsington, PA 19058.


Mr. Shayon, Annenberg


Robert Lewis Shayon, professor emeritus of the Annenberg School for Communication, passed away on June 28. He was 95.

Mr. Shayon was a member of the Annenberg School’s faculty from 1965 to 1990, where he taught graduate courses on mass media criticism and policy issues relating to mass media industries. He also taught a popular undergraduate course during the 1970s and 1980s in which he introduced students to public policy issues in the media and brought public officials and media executives to present their perspectives. “A voracious reader, Mr. Shayon was a mainstay of professorial book groups on campus,” said Dr. Joseph Turow, Robert Lewis Shayon Professor and associate dean for graduate studies at the Annenberg School. In addition to his teaching duties, Mr. Shayon chaired the Almanac Advisory Board during 1979-80 and 1980-81, and served as faculty advisor to the subcommittee of Electronic Communication Media, which was created in 1976.

Before coming to Penn, Mr. Shayon was a radio producer for WOR Mutual and CBS, where he directed and produced the “You Are There” series, which told stories of historical events as if they were being covered live on the air. A recipient of the Peabody Award, he also was a media critic for the Saturday Review and Christian Science Monitor. He authored several books including, Television and Our Children, which focused on the impact the new medium would have on the next generation.

Mr. Shayon is survived by his wife, Nash Cox; daughters, Diana and Sheila Shayon; and three grandchildren, Kristyn and Keith Shayon and Leah Novak.

A memorial service will be held September 20, 11 a.m. at All Souls Church, 1157 Lexington Avenue, New York, NY 10075.

Dr. Yamada, SEAS

Dr. Hisao Yamada, an alumnus and a former faculty member in engineering passed away on May 21, at the age of 77 after battling cancer since 2000.

Dr. Yamada received his PhD in 1960 in computer and information science from the Moore School of Electrical Engineering at Penn. As a graduate student here, he (together with his mentor, Professor Robert McNaughton, now at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, in Albany, NY) wrote some seminal papers on the theory of regular expressions and finite state automata theory, which are referred to in books on theory of computation as well as books on programming and compilers. In his PhD dissertation, he introduced the notion of real time computability and investigated classes of real time computable functions as well as computable functions that are not real time computable. Dr. Aravind Joshi, Salvatori Professor of Computer & Cognitive Science, recalled that “this work was very positively reviewed not only in the computer science related journals but also in other theoretical journals such as the Journal of Symbolic Logic. Dr. Yamada’s work also played a key role in the early days of the field of computational complexity, by now a very well established area in computer science.”

From 1960 to 1962, Dr. Yamada worked as the manager of the Information Processes Laboratory, General Dynamics, Rochester, NY. In 1962 he moved to IBM Research Division at Poughkeepsie, NY.

In 1966 Dr. Yamada returned to the University and joined Penn’s Moore School of Electrical Engineering, in the Computer and Information Science program. He played a key role in the establishment of the PhD granting Graduate Group in CIS, which later became in 1972 the CIS department in the School of Engineering and Applied Science. He worked at the Moore School until 1972.

In September 1972 Dr. Yamada left for the University of Tokyo, Japan, to become a professor in the department of information science. He remained in that position until 1991. From 1988 to 1996 he also worked for the National Institute of Informatics, Tokyo and from 1996 to 2001 he was a professor at the department of computer and cognitive sciences at the Chukyo University, Nagoya.

After moving to the University of Tokyo, Dr. Yamada continued his work in automata theory. However, he soon became interested in the layout of Japanese keyboards. Since Japanese writing involves three different kinds of scripts, hiragana, katakana, and kanji, the last one involving a huge number of characters. The problem of efficient keyboard layout for Japanese keyboards is a very challenging and practical problem. Dr. Yamada began with a detailed analysis of the technical, social, and political problems in the development of the Qwerty and Dvorak keyboards for English, the former winning out ultimately. He invented the so-called T-Code, an input method for Japanese. He carried out several experiments in order to estimate the speed of typing as well as the required training time. “This work of Dr. Yamada has been very influential in the ergonomic designs of Japanese keyboard layouts,” said Dr. Joshi.

Dr. Yamada is survived by his wife, Nobuko; a son, Yu-jin; and a daughter, Emi.

Memorial: Professor Dunfee

The Legal Studies and Business Ethics Department will hold a memorial service for the late Thomas W. Dunfee, Joseph Kolodny Professor of Social Responsibility, who died on June 2 (Almanac July 15, 2008). The memorial service will be held on Friday, October 10, at 3 p.m., on the 8th floor of Jon M. Huntsman Hall. A reception will follow. All are welcome.  A website commemorating Thomas W. Dunfee is located at:  http://lgst.wharton.upenn.edu/dunfeet.

Memorial: Mr. Montgomery

The memorial service for long-time Penn Glee Club director Bruce Montgomery, who passed away on June 21 (Almanac July 15, 2008), is scheduled for Sunday, October 5 at Irvine Auditorium. A pre-service reception, open to all, is planned for 1 p.m., with the service scheduled to begin at 3 p.m. Register to attend at www.montyart.com.

To Report A Death

Almanac appreciates being informed of the deaths of current and former faculty and staff members, students, and other members of the University community.

However, notices of alumni deaths should be directed to the Alumni Records Office at Room 545, Franklin Building, (215) 898-8136 or e-mail record@ben.dev.upenn.edu.

Almanac - September 2, 2008, Volume 55, No. 2