Kenneth A. Fegley, professor emeritus of electrical and systems engineering in Penn’s School of Engineering and Applied Science, died January 15. He was 94.
Dr. Fegley earned his bachelor’s degree in 1947, his master’s in 1950 and his PhD in 1955, all in electrical engineering at Penn. During his graduate studies he worked as a researcher, then as an instructor, and he published several reports and papers. In 1955, Dr. Fegley became an assistant professor in what was then known as the University’s Moore School of Electrical Engineering. He spent a year as visiting assistant professor at MIT before his promotion to associate professor at Penn in 1958. He was promoted to full professor in 1966.
He taught many courses, performed groundbreaking research, some in cooperation with industry, and published papers on complex interdisciplinary projects. When the Moore School was reorganized into four departments, he and Nelson Dorny, now emeritus professor of systems engineering, were charged with developing the program for the department of systems engineering, one of the country’s first. They developed several new courses with manuals, such as systems optimization and a system integration lab course, including a management structure.
In 1986, the civil engineering department and the systems engineering department merged, and the new department was broadened to include not only electrical but also transportation, manufacturing and environmental systems engineering. Dr. Fegley was appointed chairman of the new department. In 1990, he was named the Joseph Moore Professor of Systems.
A Fellow of the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers (IEEE) and former chairman of the Philadelphia section, Dr. Fegley was the single or leading author of about 30 papers and numerous technical reports and co-author on many others by his graduate students.
Dr. Fegley retired in 1994. He is remembered by alumni, faculty and professional colleagues as an innovative and dedicated professor, an excellent administrator and a dear friend.
Dr. Fegley is survived by his sons, Alan (Claire), John and Paul (Gail); his grandchildren Devon Adams (Douglas), Erin Kaplan (Ari), and David; and great-grandchildren Avery and Grayson Adams and Chase Kaplan.
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