In Memoriam: Dr. James R. Beck

Date

01/31/19

We are saddened to share that Dr. James R. Beck (PhD, ’61, Rinehart), alumnus and longtime supporter of the University of Illinois, passed away on January 16, 2019.

Dr. Beck was born in Paris, Illinois on August 17, 1931. He received his bachelor’s degree from the University of California at Berkeley in 1957 before coming to Illinois where he studied under Prof. Kenneth L. Rinehart, completing his PhD studies in 1961.

He was a research leader at Lilly from 1962 until his retirement in 1989. Areas of research included synthetic organic chemistry (especially heterocyclic chemistry, nonaqueous diazotization, and aromatic nitro displacement) related to herbicides, plant growth regulators, and chemical hybridizing agents. At one time he shared a lab at Lilly with fellow Illinois alumnus, Herschel Porter (PhD, ’47, Fuson). 

Dr. Beck was interested in archaeology, volcanoes, nature, South American Indian cultures, and native Alaskan cultures (Inuit carvings). He collected historical documents and his collection included pieces signed by Washington, Jefferson, Hancock, Franklin, Patrick Henry (to whom he was related) and Lincoln (to whom he was also related).

Dr. Beck has supported the University of Illinois since the mid-1980s, establishing multiple named funds to provide undergraduate scholarship, graduate fellowship, and unrestricted support for the departments of chemistry and microbiology. Countless students have benefited from his generosity over the years. One of the 2018-19 recipients of the James R. Beck Fellowship in Chemistry expressed her gratitude: “I really appreciate your thoughtful contribution to helping fund my pursuit of an organic chemistry PhD. Your support significantly reduces financial stress and allows me to focus fully on my research.”

The department remembers Dr. Beck’s inspirational legacy of service and generosity with fondness and deep gratitude.

Read more about Dr. Beck on the University of Illinois Foundation website.

Directory

scheelinAlexander
Scheeline
bjmccallBenjamin
McCall
cmartn10Calgary
Martin
r-gennisRobert
Gennis
j-gerltJohn
Gerlt
sgranickSteve
Granick
mgruebelMartin
Gruebele
hergenroPaul
Hergenrother
huangRaven
Huang
mlkraftMary
Kraft
leckbandDeborah
Leckband
yi-luYi
Lu
martinisSusan
Martinis
snairSatish
Nair
eoldfielEric
Oldfield
rienstraChad
Rienstra
cmsCharles
Schroeder
zanZaida
Luthey-Schulten
sksScott
Silverman
s-sligarStephen
Sligar
tajkhorsEmad
Tajkhorshid
zhao5Huimin
Zhao
pbraunPaul
Braun
mdburkeMartin
Burke
jeffchanJefferson
Chan
sdenmarkScott
Denmark
dlottDana
Dlott
foutAlison
Fout
agewirthAndrew
Gewirth
ggirolamGregory
Girolami
sohirataSo
Hirata
jainPrashant
Jain
jkatzeneJohn
Katzenellenbogen
nmakriNancy
Makri
douglasmDouglas
Mitchell
jsmooreJeffrey
Moore
murphycjCatherine
Murphy
r-nuzzoRalph
Nuzzo
dimerPhilip
Phillips
rauchfuzThomas
Rauchfuss
joaquinrJoaquín
Rodríguez-López
sarlahDavid
Sarlah
kschweizKenneth
Schweizer
jsweedleJonathan
Sweedler
vddonkWilfred
van der Donk
renskeRenske
van der Veen
vuraweisJosh
Vura-Weis
mcwhite7M.
White
sczimmerSteven
Zimmerman
beakPeter
Beak
wklemperWalter
Klemperer
jdmcdonaJ.
McDonald
pogoreloTaras
Pogorelov
mshen233Mei
Shen
dewoonDavid
Woon
wboulangWilliam
Boulanger
rxbRohit
Bhargava
qchen20Qian
Chen
jianjuncJianjun
Cheng
hy66Hong
Yang
andinomaJosé
Andino Martinez
decosteDonald
DeCoste
thhuangTina
Huang
tjhummelThomas
Hummel
dkellDavid
Kell
doctorkMichael
Koerner
marvilleKelly
Marville
crrayChristian
Ray
tlbrownTheodore
Brown
rmcoatesRobert
Coates
thdjrThom
Dunning
dykstraClifford
Dykstra
j-jonasJiri
Jonas
j-lisyJames
Lisy
shapleyJohn
Shapley
pshapleyPatricia
Shapley
zumdahl2Steven
Zumdahl
ksuslickKenneth
Suslick
jcoxJenny
Cox
sqdSean
Drummond
dmillsDouglas
Mills
sheeleySarah
Sheeley
jsmaddenJoseph
Madden
cknight4Connie
Knight
schulzeHeather
Schulze
slangleySamantha
McLain
kbaumgarKeena
Finney
adkssnBeatrice
Adkisson
bmylerBeth
Myler
trabari1Katie
Trabaris
strussTheresa
Struss
metclfKara
Metcalf
ljohnso2Lori
Johnson
jenruslJennifer
Russell
lchenoweLeslie
Chenoweth
jcfJonathan
Freiman
wdedoWolali
Dedo
spinnerDavid
Spinner
plblumPatricia
Simpson
stevens2Chad
Stevens
lsagekarLori
Sage-Karlson
bertholdDeborah
Berthold
kecarlsoKathryn
Carlson
sdesmondSerenity
Desmond
axelson2Jordan
Axelson
scbakerStephanie
Baker
pflotschPriscila
Falagan Lotsch
dgrayDanielle
Gray
thennes2Tom
Hennessey
mhettingMary Jo
Hettinger
holdaNancy
Holda
aibarrAlejandro
Ibarra
kimshSung Hoon
Kim
kocherg2Nikolai
Kocherginsky
philipk2Philip
Kocheril
legare2Stephanie
Legare
alewandoAgnieszka
Lewandowska
smccombiStuart
McCombie
jdm5Justin
McGlauchlen
egmooreEdwin
Moore
myerscouKathleen
Myerscough
snalla2Siva
Nalla
romanovaElena
Romanova
roubakhiStanislav
Rubakhin
shvedalxAlexander
Shved
asoudaAlexander
Soudakov
xywangXiying
Wang
kwilhelKaren
Wilhelmsen
wilkeyRandy
Wilkey
silongSilong
Zhang
schlembaMary
Schlembach
trimmellAshley
Trimmell
emccarr2Elise
McCarren
cmercierChristen
Mercier
atimpermAaron
Timperman
niesShuming
Nie
hshanHee-Sun
Han
mmgMutha
Gunasekera
kknightsKatriena
Knights
lisawLisa
Williamson
keinckKatie
Einck
kneef1Kaitlyn
Neef
park384Joyce
Park
jmadden4Jason
Madden
txiang4Tiange
Xiang
e-rogersElizabeth
Rogers
j-hummelJohn
Hummel
i-paulIain
Paul
munjanjaLloyd
Munjanja
glnGayle
Nelsen
agerardAnna
Gerard
powerskaKimberly
Powers
lolshansLisa
Olshansky
miricaLiviu
Mirica
qingcao2Qing
Cao
ljulianLisa
Julian
lisa3Lisa
Johnson
tinalambTina
Lamb
baronpBaron
Peters