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Obituaries

Frederick Irving Herzberg, PhD1

1 Copyright 2000, The Salt Lake Tribune. Originally printed Sunday, January 23, 2000. Reproduced with the courtesy and permission of The Salt Lake Tribune.

 Dr. Frederick I. Herzberg, world renowned for his theories of "job enrichment" died Wednesday, January 19, 2000 at the University Hospital in Salt Lake City at the age of 76.

Fred was born in Lynn, Massachusetts on April 18, 1923 of immigrant Jewish parents, Gertrude and Lewis Herzberg from Lithuania. He spent his boyhood in New York City. He grew up as a street-wise scrapper but with a scholar's instinct.

When he was a young man of 16, he excelled on the New York Regents' Examination and was able to enter the prestigious City College of New York where he obtained his bachelor's degree. He went on to receive his master's and PhD at the University of Pittsburgh.

In 1944, Fred married Shirley Bedell of Holden, Massachusetts. In 1948, their son Mark was born. Shirley graduated from medical school in 1961 at age 40Case Western Reserve University Medical School's first female nontraditional student, thus opening doors for many nontraditional students to follow. She became a noted Salt Lake City pediatrician. She died in 1997.

As a 22-year old battle patrol sergeant in World War II, Fred was among the first liberators to enter the Dachau concentration camp. He was assigned the task of provisioning and providing health care for the hundreds of inmates spared in the Holocaust. War decorations include the Bronze Star and Combat Infantryman's Badge.

Dr. Herzberg was brought to Utah in 1972 by the late Dr. James C. Fletcher, president of the University of Utah, with the title of Distinguished Professor of Management at the U's College of Business, then headed by Dr. George Odiorne, also a leading lecturer and author on management. The U considered itself extremely fortunate to have recruited a figure of such eminence as Dr. Herzberg.

Dr. Herzberg had an established reputation long before coming to the U in industrial psychology, consulting, and public health administration. He was a distinguished professor of management at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, Ohio, where he established and chaired the Department of Industrial Mental Health. During his academic years, he also consulted world-wide to corporations and governmentsfrom the United States to the then Soviet Union, and from Israel to Japan.

Known as the "Father of Job Enrichment" and the originator of the "Motivation-Hygiene Theory," Dr. Herzberg became both an icon and a legend among postwar visionaries such as Abraham Maslow, Peter Drucker, and Douglas MacGregor. In academic, management and scholarly circles, the mention of the surname "Herzberg" alone was sufficient to indicate an awareness and knowledge of his concepts and contributions. In 1995, the International Press announced that his book Work and the Nature of Man was listed as one of the 10 most important books impacting management theory and practice in the 20th century.

The application of his theories replaced the drudge and tedium of the workplace with a sense of self-esteem, participation, and pride of the worker in himself and his product. "Job enrichment" reinvented the notion of the craftsman who applied his signature to his product. CEOs, statesmen, assembly line workers, soldiers, and scientists are among the beneficiaries of his life's work.

In 1994, the University of Utah School of Business honored him with the Distinguished Service Award for the 1993_94 academic year. In 1994, the Frederick Herzberg Visiting Lecture Series was established in his name. His late wife also had made contributions to fund the series. In 1995, he was recognized as the Cummins Engine Professor of Management. Upon his retirement, Dr. Herzberg donated his archives to the Marriott Library at the University of Utah.

He was a long-time contributing editor to Industry Week magazine and was listed in Who's Who in America and Who's Who in the World. He wrote and was published extensively, nationally and internationally.

A stormy figure with a shag of thick white hair, Fred could be assertive and confrontative not only in the classroom, but with colleagues and client chairmen of the board. Students regarded him as a mentor and enjoyed Fred's personal, yet unorthodox, style of teaching that employed autobiography to translate personal experience into the inspiration that gives insight into human nature.

He loved history, particularly the history of the American Civil War. He spent many summer months traveling with his wife and son with battle campaign maps in hand, to second guess the great generals' strategies first-hand. His son loved searching for bullets and cannonballs.

He was familiar with the Yiddish vernacular as well as German, French, and Italian. Fred's language skills enabled him to travel the world with his wife and son to talk to and learn the histories of refugees of the Holocaust. As a one-time resident of an Irish Catholic household in New York, he had a well-developed sense of both Jewish and Christian history and practices.

Frederick Herzberg will be remembered for his humanity and for the significant changes he made in the quality of our work lives.

Fred is survived by his son, Mark, a psychiatric nurse in New Jersey; and two sisters, Miriam Bernard and Pearl Zucker of Miami, Florida.

Geula Lowenberg, PhD2

2 Adapted by Michael B. Gurtman from his memorial service reading.

Geula (Grinberg) Lowenberg passed away on the morning of November 24, 1999, 3 weeks after being injured in an automobile accident. She was Emeritus Professor of Psychology at the University of Wisconsin-Parkside.

Born in Israel in 1931, Geula was educated in Israel and received a bachelor's degree in psychology from the Hebrew University in Jerusalem, in 1957. Soon afterward she emigrated to the United States in order to enroll in the graduate training program at the University of Minnesota. She received a master's degree in industrial organizational psychology in 1959, and then returned to Israel to work as a consultant to Israeli industry. In the late 1960s she re-entered the I-O program at the University of Minnesota, earning her PhD in 1969. The title of her doctoral dissertation was "Investigation of the Convergent and Discriminant Validity of Trait Dimensions, Defined by a Self-Descriptive Adjective-Checklist." Her thesis advisor was Marv Dunnette.

Geula came to the University of Wisconsin-Parkside in 1973 as an Assistant Professor of Psychology, and received tenure and promotion in 1979. One of her major accomplishments at that time was the creation of an undergraduate training program for I-O psychology, an applied program that, even today, is unique for an undergraduate institution. Hundreds of students have been served by that program over the years, and for many it launched them into professional careers in psychology and in the world of business. In 1991, Geula became the first person in the history of the Psychology Department to attain the rank of Full Professor. In the final 2 years of her career, before retiring in 1999, Geula was given a joint appointment in the Psychology Department and the Business School, even though she continued to teach all of her classes in the psychology program.

Throughout her career, Geula was an active and productive researcher, whose numerous publications and presentations often included her students as coauthors. Among the topics that interested her were "pay-differentials" between men and women, and the relation of pay differentials to pay satisfaction. She also used, and taught, meta-analysis as a tool for cumulating research findings. In 1998, she published a comprehensive 630-page textbook, titled Current Perspectives in I-O Psychology, co-authored with Kelley Conrad. Geula was also involved in professional organizations oriented toward the advancement of her field, notably SIOP. She served on SIOP's Committee for External Affairs and the Committee on Committees.

As a teacher, Geula was dedicated to her students and helped steer many of them to professionally and personally fulfilling careers in psychology. She was the architect and the director of the I-O concentration; she taught most of the courses in that program, including the three advanced courses that were at the core of that curriculum: Personnel Psychology, Organizational Psychology, and Individual Differences. She also established externships for her students at sites throughout southeastern Wisconsin, including at S. C. Johnson. These are the tangible and objective parts of her teaching record. But Geula's contribution is perhaps more in the lasting impact that she made on students' lives. She was beloved by many students, who saw in her a role-model for the scientist-practitioner in psychology, a teacher deeply interested in their education and development, and a friend who cared about them, always, as individuals.

We will all miss you, Geula. Shalom.

Michael B. Gurtman

 

Her love of the field and of teaching made Geula an outstanding spokeswoman for I-O psychology. She provided challenging, engaging introductions to our field for many students. We will all miss Geula's love and advocacy for I-O psychology but will continue to experience it through the enthusiasm she imparted to her many students.

Patrick R. Powaser and Kelley A. Conrad

 

Other Losses

The Society was also informed of the deaths of Scott Fraser, Chair of the Psychology Department at Florida International University; and Richard (Dick) Beckhard, who is considered by many to be one of the leading figures in the field of organization development (OD).

 


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