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2020 Memorials

January 7, 2020

Dr. Bobby Dale Barnett, 1927-2020 Professor Emeritus of Poultry Science and Chair, he received his degree from the University of Wisconsin. He and his wife, Bonnie, operated a hatchery in Springdale, Arkansas, from 1950-53. He was employed at Clemson University from 1956 to 1988, serving as assistant professor, associate professor, professor and head of the Poultry Science Department. After a sabbatical at the University of Hawaii, he returned to Clemson as acting Associate Director of the South Carolina Experiment Station and later served as Assistant to the Vice President of Agriculture and Natural Resources. Dr. Barnett was active in the Poultry Science Association, a national professional organization. He served the association as a director, associate editor, annual program chairman, and as secretary-treasurer. He served as director, vice president and president of the American Poultry Historical Society and was author of a chapter of a history book issued by the society. He was a member of the American Institute of Nutrition and a life member of the World’s Poultry Science Association. He was the author or co-author of more than 100 scientific papers as well as numerous articles for the popular press. He was a U.S. Naval Reserve veteran of World War II, serving on the USS Marsh, a destroyer escort, in the Pacific theater during 1945-46. He had a great appreciation for nature, enjoyed camping and growing flowers, especially rhododendrons, of which he became expert. The Barnetts loved to travel, and after his retirement they traveled around the world, often with grandchildren. During retirement, Barnett did extensive research on family history and compiled several books on the various branches of his and Bonnie’s families. He also took up watercolor painting as a hobby during his retirement years.

Dr. Ralph “Wayne” Gilchrist, 1922-2020 Professor Emeritus of Electrical Engineering, Wayne served his country during WWII in the Army on Leyte Island in the South Pacific. He taught and received degrees in Electrical Engineering at Tri-State College in Indiana, the University of Michigan and Michigan State University. With his straight A’s as a student and a PHD in Engineering, specializing in Power Grid Distribution, he retired from teaching and research from Clemson University in 1984. Wayne married Virginia “Jean” Eileen Brock on June 8, 1949 in Angola, Indiana and they raised three children. His wife Jean passed in 1998 but Wayne remained at their home in Seneca, SC, where he had always loved listening to classical music, solving cross word puzzles, fishing and practicing his square dancing. A quiet man with high moral standards and a subtle sense of humor, his was a life well lived.

Dr. Bobby Eugene Gilliland, 1930-2020 Professor Emeritus of Electrical and Computer Engineering, he received his degree from the University of Arkansas. He began work on a Master’s Degree in chemical engineering at Tech but his education was interrupted by a Draft Board notice soliciting a need for his service, so he enlisted in the Army Reserves, achieving the rank of Private First Class. He was selected for an officers training program in 1959 at Brooke Army Medical Center, Fort Sam Houston, TX. Following his commissioning as a Second Lieutenant in the Army Medical Service Corps as an Environmental Engineer, Bob married Sara Frances Matkins, and the love of his life, on September 12, 1959. Bob served at the U.S. Army Environmental Hygiene Agency (USAEHA), He was responsible for conducting environmental assessments at 63 different Army posts, arsenals and depots across the U.S. After active duty and while in graduate school at Arkansas, he served in the Army Reserves as detachment commander of a Mobile Army Surgical Hospital (MASH) and as executive officer for a 200-bed station hospital. This service led to appointment as a Mobilization Officer Designee environmental engineer at USAEHA, a position he held for several years, with a final rank of Captain. Dr. Gilliland accepted an appointment at Clemson University as an Assistant Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering in 1967 and, over a 30-plus year career, achieved the rank of Professor and was, at various times, an Assistant Dean of Engineering, Associate Dean of Engineering and Special Assistant to the President of Clemson. He was a successful proposal writer, researcher, and author of over 60 scientific papers and articles. He was instrumental in establishing the Clemson Congressional Liaison Office and the Clemson Office of Technology Transfer that often ranked in the top-10 among U.S. universities in terms of patent/copyright royalty income.He was actively involved with many national organizations. Dr. Gilliland served as a subject matter expert for the National Council for Engineering Examiners for over 30 years.

Dr. Robert (PB) Nowack, 1924-2020 Alumni Distinguished Professor Emeritus of Civil Engineering, he received his master’s degree from the University of Pittsburgh and an honorary PhD from Clemson University in 1999. He was an Alumni Master Teacher that served the university for 62 years. In the early years, he hosted students in his home to teach them social skills, dinner etiquette for job interviews and even provided temporary housing for some students. Nowack was featured in the “Outstanding Teachers” section of the 1976-77 Taps yearbook. That year, the Student Alumni Council selected him to receive the Alumni Master Teacher Award, according to Taps. “Robert Nowack believes ‘teachers should contribute more outside of class than in the actual classroom,’” the yearbook reported.  Students remembered  Nowack’s quick and sometimes sarcastic sense of humor enlivened his classes. He had nicknames for all his students, and they had one for him, “PB,” which was short for Professor Bob. Nowack began teaching at Clemson in 1947 and retired in 2008, according to a 2008 IDEAS magazine article about him. He left only because an injury made it difficult for him to walk, friends said. He remained in the Clemson area and enjoyed hearing from his former students right up to the end of his life.  Robert “PB” Nowack remembered as a legend who shaped engineers for three generations

Dr. Michael S. Leonard, 1947-2020 Professor Emeritus of Industrial Engineering and Chair, he received his degree from the University of Florida. Mike was a Fellow of ABET and of the Institute of Industrial Engineers, receiving the 2009 IIE Fred C. Crane Distinguished Service Award. He was Adjunct Training Director of ABET after volunteering for many years on accreditation teams throughout the U.S., and after serving on the Engineering Accreditation Commission. Mike also traveled the world teaching accreditation at several universities. He was Professor Emeritus of Mercer University after serving as Senior Associate Dean of Engineering, and Professor Emeritus of Clemson University, after serving as Chair of the Department of Industrial Engineering. Mike had been Chair of the Department of Industrial Engineering at the University of Missouri-Columbia, and had been an Assistant Professor at Georgia Tech. Mike was a Professional Engineer in Missouri and South Carolina, an officer of several professional societies, and a recipient of many awards and honors. In Macon, Georgia, he had been president of the Kiwanis Club, and was currently serving as a Director. He had been a deacon in Columbia, Missouri; Pendleton, South Carolina; and Macon, Georgia. Mike loved to travel, loved attending classic car shows, and loved his Florida Gators.

Dr. Stephen Albert Lewis, 1942-2020 Professor Emeritus of Plant Pathology and Physiology, he received his degree from the University of Arizona. He was a celebrated soy bean researcher and a past President of the Society of Nematologists. He was also elected a Fellow of the society. A professor Emeritus, he had retired from Clemson University as the Department Chair for Plant Pathology and Physiology. Dr. Lewis had many hobbies and interests including cars, travel, film, art, classical music, photography and food, but his main focus was always his family. He was a member of Holy Trinity Episcopal Church.

Dr. Philip Hunter Prince, 1926-2020 Former Clemson University President and Trustee, he received an athletic scholarship to Clemson College in 1944, but his time at college was interrupted by U.S. Army service in 1944-45. He returned to Clemson and was co-captain of the 1948 football team, which won the 1949 Gator Bowl. He also was vice president of the 1949 senior class. After graduation, he attended Columbia University and Kings College, then served in the Army again in 1950-51.  He began a career with Milliken and Company in 1951 and held various management and executive positions until 1967. He then served the company as vice president. In 1978, he became senior vice president for American Express before accepting a similar position at Synco Property Inc. in Charlotte. He retired in 1985. Prince has a distinguished record of service to Clemson. He was a member of Tiger Brotherhood and served on the Board of Visitors and the Alumni National Council. Beginning in 1982, he served on the board of the Clemson Foundation and became its president in 1989. He led the Campaign for Clemson, which raised $101 million for scholarships, professorships and other academic needs. He and his wife, Celeste, donated $900,000 to the campaign and Prince donated his presidential salary to university academics. He earned the Distinguished Alumni Service Award, the Clemson Medallion and the Clemson Distinguished Athletes Award, which honors athletes who have shown great character and become outstanding citizens in their lives after Clemson. Prince is known for one of the most important plays in Clemson football  history. He blocked a punt that led directly to a touchdown with just four minutes remaining against South Carolina in 1948, a play that led to a 13-7 Tigers victory. Frank Howard’s team went on to an undefeated 11-0 season, Clemson’s only undefeated season between 1901 and 1980. Prince was recognized for his leadership and lifelong commitment to Clemson with an honorary Doctor of Humanities degree in May of 1995. Each year, five faculty members are presented with the Phil Prince Award for Innovation in Teaching at the Victor Hurst Convocation.

Mr. Charles V. Privette, Jr., 1941-2020 Professor Emeritus of Agricultural and Biological Engineering and Cooperative Extension, Privette received his Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in Agricultural Engineering from Clemson University. He was employed by the Clemson University Cooperative Extension Service for 27 years where he was instrumental in the development of irrigation for farming throughout South Carolina. Prior to joining Clemson University, he served his Country in the US Army as a Second Lieutenant in Alaska where he remained with the Corps of Engineers after discharge. While with the Corps, he helped rebuild roads and bridges after the Great Alaskan Earthquake that hit Anchorage in 1964.

Dr. Mark S. Steadman, 1930-2020 Alumni Distinguished Professor Emeritus of English and Writer-In-Residence, Mark was an esteemed member of the faculty at Clemson University from 1957 until his retirement in 1997. He was beloved and admired by most of his thousands of students. He taught a wide spectrum of classes at Clemson including The American Novel, American Literature and Twentieth Century Fiction. He also started and taught a course on American Humor and Creative Writing. He was Writer-in-Residence at Clemson from 1980-1997. He was awarded the honors of Alumni Distinguished Professor of English and Writer in Residence Emeritus upon his retirement in 1997. Mark was Visiting Professor of American Literature at the American University in Cairo where he lived for a year with his wife Jo Steadman and his sons Clay, Todd, and Wade. Subsequently he was granted a Fulbright Lecturer in American Literature at Leningrad State University in 1983 in the former Soviet Union. In addition to publishing dozens of short stories and articles, Steadman was the author of four novels; McAfee County (which was named Best First Novel of the Year by Britannica Books) A Lions Share (awarded the best work of fiction by a South Carolina writer), Angel Child, and Bang Up Season. Steadman was inducted into the South Carolina Academy of Authors in 2002. Mark cared deeply about fairness and justice and was active in the Civil Rights Movement of the 60’s to help ease the transition of desegregation. He was also an accomplished carpenter who built fine furniture, a boat, and the family home.

Mr. John Finlay Welter, 1930-2020 Professor Emeritus of Poultry Science, he obtained his then attended Clemson University and was in the ROTC. Immediately after graduating from Clemson he served as a Second Lt. in the Korean War for two years. John returned to Clemson in 1961 with his family, to manage the Poultry Science Farm and to obtain his Masters in Poultry Science. He continued to work at Clemson University as an Extension and 4-H agent for the Poultry Science Department until his retirement in 1988. John was given the Lions Club International Award, SCACAA Award, Oconee County Poultry Producer Association Award, Boy Scouts of America Oconee District Committee Service Award, the Patriot Hospice Military Award, and was featured in the “Barns, Barbeques, and Bales of Cotton” book. John was affectionately known as the “Chicken Man” because not only was he a Poultry Specialist professionally, he was known for his barbeque chicken and pork throughout the state.

Mrs. Mable H. Wynn, 1942-2020 Professor Emerita of Parks, Recreation and Tourism Management, she received her M.S. degree  in Dance Education from Springfield College in Springfield, MA. Mable began her career as an instructor in dance and physical education at South Carolina State College in Orangeburg, SC, after 10 years she moved to Clemson, SC with her husband. She retired from Clemson in 2000 as Professor Emerita of Parks, Recreation and Tourism Management at Clemson University.  She held membership and positions in many social and cultural organizations and several government commissions, particularly those dealing with the arts and child development. “Marvelous Mable” as she was known to her friends was a member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc.  She was the first advisor of the Omicron Phi Chapter at Clemson University which was chartered in 1983.  She held the position of advisor until 2017, under which 27 Lines and 405 Deltas were born.



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