Robert Lee Baker
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August 20, 1927 - November 15, 2012
Age 85. Dr. Robert L. (Bob) Baker passed away at home in Palos Verdes Estates following a long battle with cancer, with his loving wife of 65 years, Mary Dye Baker, at his side.
Bob was an exceptional and generous mentor, to his students, family, associates and friends. His extensive interests, insight and intelligence and his genuine personal interest in the success of others will be missed by all of us who had the honor to know and love him. His commitment to research toward improving public school education has left a lasting legacy.
Born and raised in Salina, Kansas, Bob was awarded a Bronze Star and a Purple Heart for his service in the U.S. Army at the end of WWII and in the Korean War. He earned his PhD in Educational Psychology at the University of Nebraska, and joined the faculty at Arizona State University in 1955. In 1966 he was a founding director of the Southwest Regional Laboratory for educational research, shortly after which he and his family moved to Palos Verdes, where he became a member of the golf and tennis clubs and a volunteer at the local libraries. In the late 1970's he returned to academia, joining the faculty at University of Southern California while continuing to consult on projects for SWRL and the Los Angeles Unified School District. He remained active at USC well into his eighties as Professor Emeritus of Psychology & Technology at The Rossier School of Education.
Bob is survived by his wife, Mary; daughter, Katherine with husband, Henry Caroselli; son, Scott with wife, Laurie; grandchildren Mike Caroselli with wife, Devon; Emily (Baker) with husband, Meeko Mendez; Dan Caroselli; Aly (Baker) with husband, Joey Williams; Annie Baker; and Anna Caroselli with fiance, Ben Leachman; and great grandchildren, Adeline and Alana Caroselli; and Tessa Williams. He is predeceased by his older brother, Kendall; and survived by younger twin siblings, Bill Baker of Colorado Springs, CO; and Betsy Peck of Anderson, IN; as well as nieces, Sue Giles of Tucson and Sally Von Summer of Washington, D.C.
A gathering of family and friends will be held in Palos Verdes on Friday, November 23, 2012. For further information call 310/546-3533. In lieu of flowers, please consider supporting your local public schools. Share a memory at www.lafuneral.com or sign the guestbook at www.dailybreeze.com/obits.
Published in Daily Breeze on Nov. 21, 2012