DOWNIE, RICHARD DIXON
Richard Dixon Downie passed away at the age of 84 on December 20, 2016 at the E.T. York Hospice Care Center in Gainesville, Florida.
Born in San Francisco on May 9, 1932, he grew up in the area and used to walk through the Golden Gate Park every day to attend George Washington High School. He attended UC Davis, University of Michigan and Michigan State University and obtained undergraduate, graduate, and PhD degrees in Counseling Psychology, and Student Affairs.
In between he served in the army and was located in Nome, Alaska for two years.
He served as a School Counselor at Vacaville HS and Gunn HS in Palo Alto. While there, he was recruited by his UC Davis Professor Dr. Lawrence Newberry who was superintendent of the American International School in New Delhi, India, to be Director of Student Services. From 1964-through 1969 he worked at the school where he met his wife Masuma Zaidi.
In 1976, after obtaining their Phd at Michigan State University, they moved to Gainesville, Florida. Richard worked at the University of Florida as Director of International Students and Scholars and later as Associate Director of the International Center.
While at the University of Florida he served as a Regional and later National President of NAFSA: Association of International Educators. He traveled abroad extensively on behalf of UF, NAFSA, USAID, and the Fulbright Program to develop international education exchanges. He and Professor Janet Larsen developed a minor and taught a course in multicultural counseling, for the Department of Counselor Education. His other research interest was Third Culture Kids (TCKs), a concept developed by Professor Ruth Hill Useem from Michigan State University to study the experiences of young Americans whose parents worked for the US State Department, DOD, for business or as missionaries, and other international organizations abroad. They organized conferences and networked with likeminded professionals from universities and the private sector, to continue to research and document the experiences of internationally mobile families and their children, now in common parlance known as TCKs. A few weeks before his passing in an email message to a colleague he said, 'There are many ways to understand what it means to grow up among worlds! Another way to 'move on'.
In 2000, Richard retired from the University of Florida. He and his wife made their homes both in Gainesville, Fl, and Hyderabad, India. He is survived by his wife of 49 years, and numerous nieces and nephews and their children.
The family extends their appreciation to the E.T. York Hospice Care Center for Richard's care during the last few days of his life.
By wishes of Richard and Masuma, there will not be a memorial service. Those who wish to express their appreciation of Richard's life can do so by means of a donation to E.T. York Hospice Care Center in Gainesville.
Published in Gainesville Sun from Jan. 7 to Jan. 8, 2017