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Henry C. (Hank) Stevens

by Susan J. Ainsworth
June 2, 2014 | A version of this story appeared in Volume 92, Issue 22

Henry C. (Hank) Stevens.

Henry C. (Hank) Stevens, 95, a retired R&D manager for PPG Industries and a chemistry lecturer at the University of Akron, died in Akron, Ohio, on Jan. 18, after falling while walking to church.

Born in Austria, Stevens served in the Austrian Army before immigrating to the U.S. in 1939. He received a B.S. in chemistry from Columbia University in 1941 and worked briefly as a food chemist for H. Kohnstamm & Co.

After joining PPG in Barberton, Ohio, in 1942, Stevens earned an M.S. in chemistry in 1949 and a Ph.D. in organic chemistry in 1951, both from Western Reserve University (now Case Western Reserve University) in Cleveland, under the supervision of Paul Bartlett of Harvard University.

During his 43-year career with PPG, Stevens worked as a research chemist, supervisor of exploratory research, and manager of university R&D. He was granted 40 U.S. patents. He also served as an adjunct professor in the University of Akron chemistry department.

After retiring from PPG in 1986, Stevens served as a lecturer at the University of Akron through the 2013 fall semester.

Stevens was an emeritus member of ACS, joining in 1944. He served as chair of the Akron Section in 1985 and was twice awarded the section’s Glenn H. Brown Distinguished Service Award. This year’s Crano Lecture recognized Stevens’s service to the section.

He was a member, elder, and choir member of Westminster Presbyterian Church in Akron for 63 years. Stevens was an active member of the Akron Symphony Chorus.

Stevens’s wife, Jean, predeceased him. He is survived by his son, James; daughter, Kathy Conway; three grandchildren; and seven great-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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