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Karl Barth

Biography

Karl Barth earned a BA in 1960, MA in 1962 and Ph.D. in 1964, all from Rice University, and Gerald MacLane directed his dissertation. He served in the U.S. Army as a Captain 1964-1966, and then came to SU where he was promoted to associate professor in 1970 and professor in 1977. He had NSF grant support from 1968 to 1974 and from 7/1/78 to 12/31/81, and he was senior visiting fellow of the British Science and Engineering Research Council 1975-1976 and 1/1/87-12/31/87, the latter year with stipend approximately 12,000 pounds. Karl was a member of the (U.S.) National Research Council's Graduate Fellowship Evaluation Panel in Mathematics 1981-1984, chair 1984.

His research interests were theory of functions of one complex variable and two-dimensional potential theory, he has published 34 research papers, 14 of them jointly with Walter Schneider and 4 with Phil Rippon at the Open University, and he directed one Ph.D. dissertation, that of May Hamdan in 1994. Karl has spent approximately four years in London on various research leaves, and during that time he has given numerous colloquium lectures in Britain. For example, in London he has spoken several times each at University, and Cambridge Universities; and in Ireland at University College Cork, University College Dublin and Trinity College. He gave two invited 30-minute talks at conferences in Britain in 1987, and invited 20-minute talks at the AMS meetings in March 1990 and January 1995. From 1974 to 1991 Karl worked in the self-paced calculus, was a coauthor of all the various editions of materials, and visited high schools in conjunction with Project Advance.

Karl has served on the Executive Committee in 1969-1970, 1971-1972, 1973-1975, 1983-1985, 1989-1991,1993-1995, 1999-2001; the Graduate Committee 1976-1979, 1985-1986; the Undergraduate Committee 1988-1989,1998-1999; and 10 ad hoc committees for review, reappointment, promotion and tenure, chair of two of them. He was colloquium chair 1989-1992, and for the College he was a member of the curriculum committee 1981-1983 and of the Faculty Council 1991-1992.

He was a member of the University Senate from 1994 to 2002, except for 1997-1998 when he was in England, a member of the Senate Budget Committee and its Subcommittee on Administrative Costs 1993-1997, and the vice chair 1995-1996 and chair 1996-1997 of the Senate Budget Committee. After Karl presented the Budget Committee's report in the Senate in 1997, the Chancellor particularly commended him for his fine job. From 1998 to 2000 he was a member of the Senate Agenda Committee, from 1999 to 2000 he was chair of the Subcommittee on Nominations of the Senate Agenda Committee and since 2000 he has been a member of the Senate Committee on Services to the Faculty and Staff. He was on the Board of Graduate Studies 1979-1980, and a member of AMS, MAA, AAUP and the London Mathematical Society.

Karl and Lois had a very happy marriage of 15 years, and were enjoying Karl's research leave in London in 1997-1998, when on January 1 Lois suffered a massive stroke and died 9 days later. All six of their children came quickly and were there when she died. Later that month Karl and all six children were at a memorial service at Grace Episcopal Church in Syracuse, and several participated in the service. At Christmas that year all six children were at Karl and Lois's home.

For 30 years he has been running at noon with a group of other runners, 4 miles a day for 6 days a week. In the past, he ran marathons in New York City, London, and Washington, D.C. (the Marine Corp Marathon).

Sources: January 2001 cv.; comments from Karl. --Phil Church-- 6/20/02 and 6/27/02

Karl Barth retired in 2005. He passed away May 5, 2016. Obituary