Agawam in Raymond, Maine, and along with his wife, Peg, ran the camp for 30 years. He started the Main Idea program at Agawam in 1971, which gives more than 100 boys a free week of camping activities each summer. Mason received The 2005 Halsey Gulick Award from the Maine Youth Camping Association. He and his wife also owned and operated Agawam Kezar Ski Camp for 40 years in Center Lovell, Maine. The Fryeburg Academy Alumni Association honored Mason as outstanding non-alumnus in 2013. He was also selected for the 2017 Fryeburg Academy Hall of Excellence for being a strong supporter of many academy sporting events. Mason is survived by his wife; two sons; one daughter; five grandchildren; and one great-grandchild.
Erwin V. Alpert, retired store manager, New Haven, Conn., on January 28, 2018. Born in New Haven, Alpert graduated from Cheshire Academy. After the College he served in the Army as part of the Yale Medical Corps based in Saipan and New Zealand. Upon returning to New Haven he lived the remainder of his life happily married to Florence Sterling Alpert and with his sons, Richard and Daniel. He was the retired manager at Sterling & Sussman Department Store. Alpert was predeceased by his son Richard and his son-in-law Eduardo Sese. He is survived by his wife, son Daniel and son-in-law Rabbi Eric Weiss.
James W. Gell, ob/gyn, Bloomfield Hills, Mich., on February 2, 2018. Gell was born on April 1, 1927, and raised on Long Island. He attended Townsend Harris H.S., and graduated from the College at 18 and the University of Michigan Medical School at 22. During WWII, Gell volunteered for the Navy, and returned to active duty as a medical officer during the Korean War, 1950–52, including a year at sea as the ship physician. Gell practiced in the Detroit area for more than 30 years, later serving on the faculty of Wayne State University Medical School. For more than two decades, he cared for uninsured women as a volunteer physician at Volunteers in Medicine on Hilton Head Island, S.C., and at Mercy Place Clinic in Pontiac, Mich. He will be remembered for his great sense of humor and as an avid University of Michigan Wolverine fan, skillful piano player, fierce card and game player, and opera lover. Above all, he will be remembered as a kind and generous man. He is survived by his wife, Sallie; four children; and five grandchildren.
Neil C. Sandberg, community relations professional and professor, Los Angeles, on March 10, 2018. During WWII, Sandberg was transferred by the Navy from duty in the North Pacific to undertake studies at Columbia. He graduated after the war and retained fond memories of his University experiences, including campus life, interactions with faculty and service as the Navy’s student representative. The latter involved meetings with Columbia’s then-president, Dwight D. Eisenhower. Sandberg was the Western Region Director for the American Jewish Committee for three decades and was the founding director of AJC’s Asia Pacific Institute in 1989. He was the longest-serving director of the Martin Gang Institute for Intergroup Relations, a shared venture of AJC Los Angeles and Loyola Marymount University. He served from 1968 to 2008, and was honored by the institute in 2013 for leadership in promoting mutual understanding between religious and ethnic communities. Sandberg also was an adjunct professor in sociology at LMU. He is survived by his wife, Mary; son, Curtis, and his wife, Silvia; and a grandson.
Bruno J. Giletti, retired professor, Oakland, Calif., on January 29, 2018. Born on December 6, 1929, to Rita Baltera Giletti and John Giletti in New York City, he attended Stuyvesant H.S. and obtained his bachelor’s, master’s and doctorate from Columbia (SEAS’52, GSAS’54, GSAS’57), maintaining school friendships through the years. Giletti was a professor of geological sciences at Brown from 1960 to 1996. A frequent contributor to major scientific journals in the field of geochemistry, his scientific curiosity led him to Oxford and Paris in his early years. Part of his research was in using radioactive isotopes to measure the ages of rocks in the Rocky Mountains, New England and Scotland. Giletti was known for his amiability, vocabulary, cooking and all-around good sense of humor. He enjoyed playing bridge, reading mystery novels and traveling, especially in Italy and France. He is survived by his wife of 33 years, Janet Orvis Chapple; daughters Ann and Laura Giletti, from his first marriage, to Dody Hannah; stepdaughters, Nancy, Beth and Karen Chapple; and six grandchildren. Memorial contributions may be made to the Alzheimer’s Association, 225 N. Michigan Ave., Fl. 17, Chicago, IL 60601.
John A. Dauer Jr., leather salesman and antiques dealer, Wilkesboro, N.C., on August 13, 2017. Born on Staten Island, N.Y., after the College, Dauer joined his father as second-generation owner of the John A. Dauer Leather Co., which has supplied the material needs of manufacturers, craftsmen and artists throughout the country for more than 70 years. Dauer continued working in his North Carolina warehouse three weeks prior to his passing, and often referred to himself as “The World’s Oldest Sheepskin Salesman.” He also directed the restoration and preservation of numerous historic houses, including houses in the Massachusetts cities of Heath, Plainfield, Hatfield and Florence, and was a dealer and collector of antiques. His vast and varied collections reflect his deep appreciation of American folk artisanship and craft. Dauer appreciated planting gardens (by their Latin names), well-prepared meals, creative banter, good humor, bad puns and steadfast friends. He was predeceased by his former wife, Rosamond Dauer, and is survived by his sons Matthew and Christian; daughters-in-law, Kristen and Catherine; and three grandsons. Memorial contributions may be made to The National Trust for Historic Preservation, 2600 Virginia Ave. N.W., Ste 1100, Washington, DC 20037; savingplaces.org.
Herbert H. Frommer, dentist and professor emeritus, New York City and Westhampton, N.Y., on February 1, 2018. Born in 1933 in Manhattan to Benjamin and Ethel Frommer, and raised in Queens, Frommer graduated from Far Rockaway H.S.; the College, where he rowed for the varsity crew; and the Dental School (1957). An accomplished practitioner for 40 years, for many decades he taught at the NYU College of Dentistry. He received the Arnold & Marie Schwartz Outstanding Teacher Award and the NYU Distinguished Teaching Award at Founders Day in 1996. A man of honesty, integrity and a spirit of loving kindness, his sunny disposition and cheerful sense of humor will be missed by all. He is survived by his wife of 57 years, Eleanor Goldman Frommer; children, Ross and Daniel; three grandchildren; brothers Paul and Alan; sisters-in-law Judith Goldman Frommer, Elizabeth Appell Frommer and Jean Goldman; and daughters-in-law, Connie Dong and Jacqueline Frommer. Memorial contributions may be made to the NYU College of Dentistry, the Park Avenue Synagogue or the Parkinson’s Foundation.
Herbert G. Hagerty, retired Foreign Service officer, Washington, D.C., on December 7, 2017. Born in 1932, Hagerty grew up in East Orange, N.J. He earned a B.A. in history and government from the College and an M.A. in South Asia regional studies in 1956 from Penn. He was also a “Distinguished Graduate” of the National War College in 1976. Hagerty was a Navy briefing officer 1957–61 and an intelligence analyst 1961–65. He retired from the Navy Reserve in 1971 as a lieutenant commander. Hagerty joined the Foreign Service in 1965 and served as a political officer in India, Norway, London and Pakistan. For courageous performance of his duties the day of a 1979 embassy attack in Pakistan, he earned a Group Award for Valor. In 1981, he earned a Superior Honor Award for “sustained high performance” during the period following the attack. In his last overseas assignment, Hagerty was the deputy chief of mission in Colombo, Sri Lanka. He retired in 1990 with the rank of minister-counselor in the Senior Foreign Service. He later taught professional writing at the Foreign Service Institute and consulted with government agencies. Hagerty was predeceased by his wife, Ann, and brother Dennis. He is survived by his brother Richard; sons from a previous marriage, Sean and Devin; stepdaughters, Jill Satin, Katy Satin and Marta Satin-Smith; a granddaughter; a niece; a nephew; and all their families.
Eric Salzman, composer and former music critic, Brooklyn, N.Y., and East Quogue, N.Y., on November 12, 2017. Salzman earned a B.A. in music and, in 1956, an M.F.A., from Princeton. He then studied for two years on a Fulbright grant in Rome. In 1966, he received a Ford Foundation grant for music critics and spent a year covering the major music festivals in Europe. His works were performed widely in Europe by leading musicians. From 1966 to 1968 Salzman taught at Queens College. He authored books on 20th-century music and on the new music theater; co-founded the American Music Theater Festival in Philadelphia, the Free Music Store in NYC and a music theater group, Quog, that developed techniques in expanded musical and dramatic modes of expression; and co-composed several music theater works. He was composer-in-residence at the Center for Contemporary Opera. He and his wife, Lorna, traveled to more than 20 countries to see birds. Salzman served on the board of the South Fork Natural History Museum & Nature Center in Bridgehampton, N.Y., conducting bird walks for them, for the Brooklyn Bird Club and for The Linnaean Society. Memorial contributions may be made to Quog. Salzman is survived by his wife; daughters, Stephanie Salzman (Carbonnier) and Eva Salzman; and a granddaughter.
Walter Braun, retired scientist, Germantown, Md., on April 3, 2018. Braun was born in the Bronx and raised in New Hyde Park, N.Y., graduating from Mineola H.S. in 1953. After graduating from the College, he went on to Brooklyn Poly Tech (now NYU) and earned a Ph.D. in chemistry. He worked for many years at the National Institute of Standards and Technology in Washington, D.C., with distinction and honors; he received a gold medal from the Department of Commerce for distinguished achievement in the federal service with the citation, “For outstanding contributions to modern gas kinetics through the development of flash photolysis resonance fluorescence and studies on laser augmented reactions.” Among the many activities Braun enjoyed, his favorites were traveling, playing tennis and tinkering with his computer. He leaves behind many family and friends in the United States, Germany and Brazil.
Richard D. Gooder, professor, Cambridge, U.K., on October 30, 2017. After the College, Gooder went to Clare College, Cambridge, on a Kellett Fellowship, earning a second B.A. in 1959. He stayed on to earn a Ph.D. and become a fellow of Clare College. Gooder’s professional life was largely spent at Cambridge University as a member of the English faculty. He was a founding editor of the literary journal The Cambridge Quarterly. Gooder married in 1960 and is survived by his wife; three children; and eight grandchildren.
Bruce M. Stave, professor emeritus, Coventry, Conn., on December 2, 2017. Stave was born on May 17, 1937, in Brooklyn, N.Y. He earned an M.A. in 1961 from GSAS and a Ph.D. from the University of Pittsburgh as a Mellon fellow. He spent the majority of his career at the University of Connecticut, starting in 1970 after being a Fulbright professor in India. At UConn, he chaired the history department and led the oral history program. Stave was one of the first faculty-designated Board of Trustees Distinguished Professors. His publications included 11 authored or edited books. In addition to his Fulbright in India, he was a Fulbright in Australia, New Zealand and the Philippines in 1977, and at Peking University 1984–85. In Coventry, Conn., he chaired the Democratic Town Committee. With his wife, Sondra Astor Stave, he founded the Northeastern chapter of the Connecticut Civil Liberties Union. Stave is survived by his wife of 60 years; son, Channing ’92, and his wife, Sara; two grandchildren; brother and sister-in-law, Howard and Renee Stave; and Sara’s parents, John and Suzanne Schloss. Memorial contributions may be made to the UConn Foundation for the Stave Prize in Recent American History.
Robert A. Kohn, retired diplomat, Washington, D.C., on December 8, 2017. Kohn was born and raised in New York City and earned a master’s from The George Washington University. Before retiring, Kohn was one of the most senior Officers of the U.S. & Foreign Commercial Service, with more than 42 years of Foreign Service experience with the Department of Commerce, Department of State, White House Office of the U.S. Trade Representative and the United Nations. Assignments included Minister for Commercial Affairs at the U.S. Embassy in France and Germany; Commercial Counselor in The Netherlands, Spain and Greece; Commercial Attaché in Peru and in Mexico; and Diplomat-in-Residence and U.S. Department of Commerce Chairman at the Industrial College of the Armed Forces, National Defense University, in Washington, D.C. Kohn was concurrently an adjunct professor of international business at Georgetown. He also served as Deputy Assistant U.S. Trade Representative for the Western Hemisphere in the Executive Office of the President, was a U.S. delegate to the United Nations, served on the U.S. Delegation to the Organization of American States and lectured extensively on trade liberalization throughout Latin America. Assignments with the State Department included Officer-in-Charge of Congressional Affairs; Officer-in-Charge of Refugee and Migration Affairs; and Political Officer in Australia, Brazil, and Peru. He leaves his wife of 50 years, Rose; sons, Robert and Aaron; and four grandchildren.
Michael L. Barnett, retired dental research consultant and retired periodontist, Princeton, N.J., on November 22, 2017. Barnett was born on October 27, 1943, in Brooklyn, N.Y., and graduated from the Dental School in 1967. He did post-doctoral fellowships at the University of Washington and Harvard. Barnett served as a captain in the Army during the Vietnam War. He was an assistant and/or associate professor at the New Jersey Dental School at the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey, SUNY Buffalo, and the University of Louisville, School of Dentistry. Barnett chaired the Department of Dentistry at the Morristown Medical Center, where he directed the dental residency program and developed a hospital-based program for the treatment of developmentally disabled children and adults. He retired from Pfizer Consumer Healthcare as the senior director of dental affairs and oral technology development and maintained a consulting practice. Barnett received numerous grants and frequently spoke and published research in the dental field, and was involved in numerous professional and cultural organizations. A lifelong French horn player, he was a music lover, supporter of the arts and a world traveler known for his dry sense of humor and incredible smile. He is survived by many cousins. Memorial contributions may be made to the New Jersey Symphony Orchestra or the Princeton HealthCare System Foundation.
William L. Weinstock, retired attorney, Brooklyn, N.Y., on June 12, 2017. Weinstock graduated from NYU Law School in 1968. He spent most of his career as an attorney with the New York State Insurance Fund, rising to the position of managing attorney in 1995. He retired in 2001. After leaving the fund he represented insurance companies and self-insured employers as defense counsel in workers’ compensation proceedings and was happy to make his extensive knowledge available to former colleagues.
Elliott S. Frank, retired computer scientist, Las Vegas, on October 14, 2017. At Columbia, Frank arranged remote engineering setups for WKCR during the Vietnam War protests. He later implemented some of the earliest back-office database management systems for most of the major banks in New York City before heading out to Silicon Valley, where he worked for Amdahl Corp. and several dot.com firms.
Jonathan M. Gutman, endodontist, Tucson, Ariz., on January 12, 2018. A longtime resident of Mamaroneck, N.Y., and a graduate of Boston University’s School of Dentistry and the Boston University Specialty Training Program in endodontics under Herbert Schilder, Gutman served patients in New Rochelle, N.Y., and Tucson. He was deeply dedicated to his family, and took great joy in all of their accomplishments. He is survived by his wife, Renee; children, Benjamin, and Rachel R. Light; and three grandchildren. Memorial contributions may be made to Congregation Chofetz Chayim in Tucson.
Gary L. Rempe II, entrepreneur, Albuquerque, N.M., on September 24, 2017. Rempe was born in North Platte, Neb., on July 22, 1964, and grew up in northern New York. He graduated from the College with a degree in history. As a student, he played varsity football, studied guitar and initiated a lifelong passion for kayaking by joining the Columbia Kayak Club. Following college, Rempe wrote an award-winning health and fitness book, and cover stories for Good Housekeeping, McCall’s and Shape magazines; started a rock band; and founded several companies, including Zummit Labs, a software company using artificial intelligence to improve the mobile commerce experience. More recently, he and his wife, Susan Beamis Rempe ’87, co-founded Memzyme, a company focused on clean energy. Rempe will be remembered for his quick wit, sense of humor and big laugh; business and community leadership; intelligence; loyalty to family and friends; love of history and music; and passion for outdoor adventures and all manner of games. He is survived by his wife, Susan; children, Caroline, Gary and his wife, Molly, Greg ’16 and Clara; mother; and three siblings.
Rachel M. Mintz, photographer and artist, New York City, on January 10, 2018. Born in Washington, D.C., Mintz was educated at the College and NYU’s Stern School of Business. A talented photographer and artist, she combined her Jewish heritage with a love for the creative arts. In addition, she was a gifted writer, adventurous traveler and an avid sports fan. Mintz’s boundless passion and enthusiasm for life perfectly exemplified the biblical verse “Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with all your might.” She is survived by her parents, Harriet and Benjamin; brothers, Adam and his wife, Sharon, and Jared; and nieces and nephews.
— Lisa Palladino
Columbia College Today welcomes obituaries for College alumni. Please fill out the “Submit an Obituary” form. Biographical information, survivors' names, address(es) for charitable donations and high-quality photos may be included.
Or, mail materials to:
Columbia College Today
Columbia Alumni Center
622 W. 113th St., MC 4530, 4th Fl.
New York, NY 10025
Published quarterly by the Columbia College Office of Alumni Affairs and Development for alumni, students, faculty, parents and friends of Columbia College.