Henry R. Winkler

Obituary
7 entries
The Guest Book is expired.

Henry R. Winkler

Henry R. Winkler died December 26, 2012. As president of the University of Cincinnati from 1977 until 1984, he oversaw the smooth transition of the university from its municipal status to that of the second (with the Ohio State University) major comprehensive state university in the Ohio system of higher education. He took particular pride in the fact that among his appointees to major positions, five subsequently became college or university presidents, one became president of Macy's and then of J.C. Penny, and one became vice president for administration and finance of the American Museum of Natural History. Born on October 27th, 1916, in Waterbury, Conn., Winkler received B.A. and M.A. degrees from the University of Cincinnati, where he was elected to Phi Beta Kappa, and his Ph.D. degree from the University of Chicago (with an interruption to serve in World War II as a Japanese Language Officer in the U.S. Navy). He taught briefly at Cincinnati and at Roosevelt College before joining the faculty at Rutgers University at New Brunswick in 1947, where he taught history and later also served as dean of the faculty of liberal arts, then as vice president for academic affairs, and finally as executive vice president. In 1976, he served as Rutgers' acting president, retiring in 1977 to return to the University of Cincinnati. A well-respected historian of 20th-century Britain, Winkler was the author or editor of seven books, dozens of articles in scholarly journals and chapters of books, and more than 200 reviews. In addition, during the 1960s, he was the editor of The American Historical Review, one of the world's leading historical journals. In 1980, he was the first serving president of the University of Cincinnati to be made a member of the Fellows of the Graduate School, a group elected for life on the basis of the members scholarly contributions. Over the years, he was also a visiting professor at Harvard, Columbia, and Bryn Mawr Universities, and at the London School of Economics. Despite his scholarly career, Winkler considered himself primarily a teacher, and he was seen as a model instructor by undergraduates and graduate students alike. While teaching at Rutgers, his annual lecture on Nazi Germany drew more than 1,000 people, far more than enrolled in the course. As an administrator, he insisted on teaching a course every year, and throughout his career he was concerned with strengthening the connections between secondary and higher education. Among his many contributions, he was a member of the National Commission on Humanities in the Schools and one of the pioneers of the Advanced Placement program. He was chairman of the Board of the National Humanities Faculty, which sought to promote teaching in the humanities by bringing together secondary-school and university teachers. Similarly, he was active on various committees of the College Board serving as chair of the Board from 1982-1984 and, from 1978-1996, on the Board of National History Day. Nationally, Winkler served on variety of committees and commissions, including the Business Higher Education Forum, the Executive Committee of the National Association of Universities and Land Grant Colleges, the Board of Directors of the American Council on Education, the National Planning Accreditation Board, and many others. At the state level, he served on the Ohio Technology and Enterprise Board, the Ohio Humanities Council, the Ohio selection committee for the Rhodes Scholarship, and numerous other local boards and committees. Always a civic activist, he was one of a group of American historians who marched from Selma to Montgomery, Ala., with Martin Luther King Jr. in 1965. He was a member of the Board of the National Civic League, a founding Board member of the Citizens for Civic Renewal, and for about three decades a Board member of Cincinnati's Murray and Agnes Seasongood Good Government Foundation. Other trusteeships included those at Thomas More College, the University of Virginia's College at Wise, the Isaac M. Wise Temple, and various advisory boards. In 1994-5 he chaired the Charter Review Committee established by Cincinnati City Council to study the effectiveness of the current system of city government. Dr. Winkler was the recipient of 10 honorary degrees, and also received the Rutgers University Medal, the William Howard Taft Medal of the U.C. Alumni Association, the Distinguished Alumnus Award of the McMicken College of Arts and Sciences, the University of Cincinnati Award for Excellence, the Xavier University Leadership Medallion, and the Lifetime Award for Scholarship and Service to the Profession of the North American Conference on British Studies.

Dr. Winkler's first wife Claire Sapadin died in 1972. He leaves his beloved wife Bea (Beatrice Chaikind Ross) and his two children, Dr. Allan M. Winkler (Sara Penhale) and Karen J. Winkler (David Moulton), three step-sons, Richard B. Ross (Barbara), Robert Ross (Louise), Kenneth Ross (Donna Cohen), and six grandchildren, Chris Ross (Jenifer), Jennifer Winkler (Eyal Oren), David Winkler, Daniel Ross (Daniella), Michael Moulton, Dakota Ross, and six great-grandchildren.

Published in Home News Tribune on Dec. 31, 2012
bullet Navy bullet Ohio State bullet WWII
- ADVERTISEMENT -
- ADVERTISEMENT -