William J. Roberts | April 4, 2011 Issue - Vol. 89 Issue 14 | Chemical & Engineering News
Volume 89 Issue 14 | p. 50 | Obituaries
Issue Date: April 4, 2011

William J. Roberts

Department: ACS News
Keywords: Obituaries, People

William J. Roberts, 92, a retired industrial chemist, died on Dec. 6, 2010, in Chapel Hill, N.C.

A native of Philadelphia, Roberts earned a B.A. in chemistry in 1942, an M.S. in chemistry in 1944, and a Ph.D. in organic chemistry in 1947, all from the University of Pennsylvania. As a student during World War II, he worked on polymer chemistry related to the development of synthetic rubber and taught chemistry classes to Army medics.

Roberts began his career working as a chemist for UGI in Philadelphia. In 1957, he joined Celanese, serving for a time as a technical director of its Fibers Division in Charlotte, N.C. He then worked for FMC from 1974 until 1976 before becoming a consultant.

He was an emeritus member of ACS, joining in 1943. He loved sailing and was an avid reader.

Roberts is survived by his wife, Eleanor; son, John; daughter, Wendy; and four grandchildren.

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