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Donald A. Biggs

Obituary
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Biggs, Donald A. GUILDERLAND Donald Anthony Biggs, 78, passed away on March 16, 2014 after a long period of failing health. Don was born on January 19, 1936 in South Bend, Ind., in his own words, "on a very cold day to a very warm family." After losing his mother Helen Couch Biggs at the age of 17, Don went on to earn a B.S. in psychology, an M.S. in counseling and an Ed.D. in educational psychology. Don married Sara Kay Banks in 1959. He began his academic career in 1962 as assistant professor of education at Creighton University. Don was a professor of educational psychology at the University of Minnesota from 1967 to 1978. From 1978 until 2004, Don was a professor of educational and counseling psychology and professor of religious studies at the University of New York at Albany, where he also served as the chair of the department of counseling psychology and student development from 1978 to 1984. Until his passing, Don held a visiting professorship at Siena College, where he worked and taught alongside his colleague and dear friend, Dr. Robert Colesante, at the Center for Urban Education. At SUNY-Albany, Don was deeply involved in international exchange programs, serving as visiting faculty in the United Kingdom, Germany, Indonesia, the U.S.S.R., and Cyprus. Even after many years of professional accomplishments, Don was most proud of his work fostering the talents of young people in urban communities. For his remarkable efforts, Don was honored with a Human Rights Spirited Achievement Award from the city of Albany and a Visions for Life Award from the Albany branch of the NAACP, among many other honors and distinctions. Don is survived by his wife, Sara Kay Biggs; his brother, Patrick Biggs; and his five children, Sheryl Biggs Albanese, Faith King, Donald Biggs, Mary Biggs, and Sara Biggs Chaney. He is also survived by eight grandchildren, Mary Grace, Katie, Aidan, Anthony, Rory, Rubin, Heike, and Goldali, as well as many nieces and nephews. Don was loved and respected by so many for his moral and intellectual commitment to progressive models of education and human development. He believed in human potential and stood against bias and reductive thinking wherever he saw it. He lived a deeply principled life and will be remembered for his contributions to local and international communities. Friends and relatives may call at the Reilly & Son Funeral Home, 9 Voorheesville Ave., Voorheesville, on Tuesday, March 18 from 4 to 7 p.m. Mass will be held on Wednesday, March 19 at 9 a.m. at St. Joan of Arc, 76 Menand Road, Menands. Donations may be made to the Urban Scholars Program at Siena College, Siena College Development Office, St. Francis House, 515 Loudon Road, Loudonville, NY 12211.
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Funeral Home
Reilly & Son Funeral Home Inc
9 Voorheesville Ave Voorheesville, NY 12186
(518) 765-3633
Funeral Home Details
Published in Albany Times Union on Mar. 18, 2014
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