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E. Peter Volpe

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E. PETER VOLPE Academician, author, researcher, Past President of the American Zoological Society, and a member on several editorial boards died on November 24th after a brief illness in Macon, Georgia. He was 77. A native of New York City, Professor Volpe received the Bachelor's degree in Zoology, summa cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa, in 1948. He received his Ph.D. at Columbia University in 1952. He became an Associate Professor in 1957 and Professor in 1960. At Tulane University in New Orleans, he served as Chair of the Zoology Department from 1954 to 1960. He served as Associate Dean of the Tulane Graduate School from 1967 to 1969 before becoming chair of the Biology Department from 1969 to 1979. In recognition of his scholarly contributions and dedication to the Tulane community, he was designated in 1979 as a distinguished Irby Professor. In 1981, Dr. Volpe joined the faculty at Mercer University School of Medicine to develop a genetic curriculum in the school's new problem-based curriculum for preclinical medical student training. Dr. Volpe retired from full-time academic work in 2002 after a career of more than 50 years. He continued to write and assist colleagues world-wide with publications and scientific inquiry. Dr. Volpe published over 90 peer-reviewed articles and 7 books ongenetics, embryology, and evolution. Funded extensively by the National Science Foundation and the National Institutes of Health, he investigated the genetics of pigmentation and development and immunological tolerance. Dr. Volpe was a member of Phi Beta Kappa, Sigma Xi and several national societies, including the Genetics Society of America, the Society for the Study of Evolution, the Society for Developmental Biology, Copeia, and the Transplantation Society. Dr. Volpe served as President of the American Zoological Association and on the editorial board, as editor, or as associate editor for Journal of Experimental Zoology, American Zoologist, Copeia, and Journal of Developmental and Comparative Immunology. He was a consulting science editor for MacMillian/McGraw-Hill Publishers and Holt, Rinehart & Winston. In 1968, Dr. Volpe was appointed by the Secretary of State as a US National Commissioner to UNESCO. He has been associated with several educational projects of the Biological Sciences Curriculum Study and served as the Chairman of the Advanced Placement Test Committee of the Educational Testing Service. In 1976, Dr. Volpe was named one of the 29 most effective undergraduate teachers in the nation by Change magazine. He traveled extensively as a lecturer in the AAAS-sponsored Chautauqua-Short Courses for College Teachers, was a Regional Lecturer for the Society of Sigma Xi,and lectured in the Elderhostel Program.Dr. Volpe was preceded in death by his first wife, Carolyn Thorne Volpe. He is survived by his wife,Lesley, two daughters and sons-in-law, Dr. Laurie Volpe and husband, Dr. Karl Dunz, of Paris, France and Lisa V. Leonard and husband, Dr. Nathaniel G. Pitts, of Arlington, VA; one son, John P. Volpe of Metairie, LA; one stepdaughter,Alexis S. Cochran and husband, Adam J. Cochran, of Macon, GA; three grandchildren, Stephanie Pitts of Arlington VA and Matthew Smith and Keith Barker of Fort Valley, GA. He is also survived by two sisters and a brother; Lorraine Meehan of West Haverstraw, NY and Carol Volpe and Ray Volpe both of New York City. A memorial service will be held in the Mercer University School of Medicine auditorium on Monday, November 29th, at 4:00 pm. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Carolyn T. Volpe and E.Peter Volpe Scholarship fund at Mercer University School of Medicine (1550 College Street, Macon, GA 31207). Family may be contacted at 1105 Bond Street, Macon, GA. Hart's Mortuary has charge of arrangements.
Published in The Atlanta Journal-Constitution on Nov. 29, 2004
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