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Herbert S. Parnes

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PARNES Herbert S. Parnes, age 87, died August 5, 2006, of a prolonged illness. He was professor of economics at The Ohio State University from 1951-1980, when he was honored as Emeritus Professor. He served as chair of the Faculty of Labor and Human Resources from 1975-1980. He also served as principle investigator for a major longitudinal study of labor market experience, funded by the Bureau of the Census and the Department of Labor, from 1964-1980. This ongoing study has generated rich data which continue to be used by social scientists. Dr. Parnes, along with Howard Rosen, are credited with having the vision to see that this data would provide a basis for policies fostering more efficient and equitable labor markets. Following his retirement from OSU, he became Professor of Industrial Relations and Human Resources at Rutgers University, Institute of Management and Labor Relations, 1980-1983. He returned to Columbus and served as principal investigator of one segment of the National Longitudinal Survey from 1988-1992. Dr. Parnes was born April 4, 1919. He attended public schools in Pittsburgh, Pa., and received his A.B. (1939) and M.A. (1941) degrees from the University of Pittsburgh. He served in the U.S. Army from August, 1942 through May, 1946, and was stationed in Occupied Japan. Following his military service, he began his graduate studies at OSU in 1947, completing his doctoral degree in 1950. During leaves of absence from OSU he was Visiting Professor of Economics at Princeton University from 1954-1955; Visiting Professor of Business Administration at the University of Minnesota, summer, 1959; and Consultant for the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development in Paris, France, 1961-1962. Throughout his career, he served in a variety of consulting and advisory capacities, including the National Security Resources Board (1952); the President's Committee on Engineers and Scientists (1959); the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (1961-65); the Review Panel on Aging, National Institute on Aging, U.S. Department of Health and Social Services (1980-82). Dr. Parnes authored or edited 25 books or monographs, including People Power (1984), and wrote numerous professional articles and book reviews. He also wrote delightful stories for his grandchildren, and self-published a memoir, "A Prof's Life," and a book of essays, "Thinking Thoughts," which provide a rich personal legacy for his family. In his retirement years he learned wood carving from a friend, and carved a totem pole which is a focal point at his summer home on Cape Cod. There he has planted indigenous trees in honor of each of his 7 grandchildren and 3 great grandchildren. He is survived by his wife, Atha R. Parnes; his brother, Sidney J. Parnes; and his three children: Jane C. Parnes, Marc L. Parnes and Gail E. Jones. Memorial service will be Saturday, August 12 at 2 p.m. at SCHOEDINGER WORTHINGTON CHAPEL, 6699 N. High St. (1/2 mile south of I-270). In lieu of flowers, donations in his memory may be made to The Herbert Parnes Memorial Fund c/o The Columbus Medical Association Foundation 431 E. Broad St. On-line condolences may be made to www.schoedinger.com
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