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Gilbert S. Panson

by Susan J. Ainsworth
December 16, 2013 | A version of this story appeared in Volume 91, Issue 50

Gilbert S. Panson, 92, a professor of chemistry emeritus at Rutgers University, Newark, died on Jan. 20.

Born in Paterson, N.J., Panson earned a B.A. in chemistry magna cum laude from Brown University in 1941. He then earned an M.S. in 1951 and Ph.D. in 1953, both in chemistry from Columbia University.

Panson served as an instructor and assistant professor at Hobart College in Geneva, N.Y., from 1941 to 1944, before working on the Manhattan Project in Oak Ridge, Tenn.

He joined the faculty at Rutgers in 1946 as a professor of chemistry. He played a vital role in building the chemistry department, serving as its chair for 10 years. Panson is remembered for giving exciting lectures in which he clearly presented material, including advanced organic chemistry.

Panson was acting dean of Rutgers’s Newark College of Arts & Sciences from 1971 until 1972 and the first dean of Rutgers’s graduate school in Newark from 1975 until 1981. He retired in 1985.

He was an emeritus member of ACS, joining in 1941.

Panson is survived by his wife of 67 years, Patricia; a daughter, Leslie Blumstein; a son, Richard; and two grandchildren.

Obituary notices of no more than 300 words may be sent to Susan J. Ainsworth at ­ and should include an educational and professional history.


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