ALAN PHILIP WERTHEIMER
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ALAN PHILIP WERTHEIMER - BURLINGTON - Alan Philip Wertheimer, professor emeritus of political science at UVM and senior research scholar in the Department of Bioethics at The National Institutes of Health, died Friday, April 10, 2015, with his loving family present. Alan is survived by his wife, Susan of Burlington; daughters, Rachel and Rebecca of Portland, Maine; son, Joel of Brooklyn, N.Y.; son-in-law, Andrew Pixley; and Joel's companion, McKensey Smith. He leaves three adored grandchildren, Eliot Wertheimer, and Benjamin and Mae Pixley, all of Portland, Maine; brother, Eric and sister-in-law, Joan, of Rhode Island; brother-in-law, Burton Deutsch of Cleveland, Ohio; father-in-law, Jim Abbott of Bethel, Vt.; sister and brother-in-law, Cynthia and Dan Clear of Indianapolis, Ind.; many nieces and nephews; and special friend, Peter Bernett of Belmont, Mass., from 7th grade Shop Class, (where Peter assures us Alan did not shine) also survives him. He was predeceased by his parents; and sister, Susie Deutsch. Alan arrived Aug. 19, 1942, in Manhattan, born to Jean Dessau Wertheimer and Philip Wertheimer. He spent his childhood in Larchmont, N.Y., earned his B.A. at New York University, and completed his Ph.D. in Political Science at Case Western Reserve University. He arrived at UVM in 1967, and served on the faculty of the Political Science Department until his retirement in 2005. A committed university citizen, he was associate dean of the College of Arts and Sciences in the 1970s, served as department chair for many years, and was selected as University Scholar for the 1995-96 academic year. Alan earned fellowships at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton and in the Professional Ethics Program at Harvard's John F. Kennedy School of Government, where he also was a visiting faculty member for two years. A dedicated scholar, he authored numerous books and articles, most recently, "Rethinking the Ethics of Clinical Research: Widening the Lens," published by Oxford University Press and "Consent to Sexual Relations," published by Cambridge University Press. After retiring from UVM, Alan accepted a one-year fellowship in the Department of Bioethics at the National Institutes of Health, then under the direction of Dr. Ezekiel Emmanuel. One year turned into ten; at the time of his death, he was still employed part-time by NIH. He leaves many wonderful colleagues both at UVM and NIH and in the ethics world. His academic friends are legion, too numerous to mention, but you know who you are. In addition to being a devoted husband, father, and scholar, Alan loved playing games, notably bridge, which he resumed after a thirty-year hiatus once the children spread their wings. His friends at the Burlington Bridge Club will miss him greatly. The racetrack at Saratoga will have an empty seat every August from now on. And we hope someone out there, still, can recite entire Seinfeld episodes verbatim. The family wishes to thank the compassionate and professional doctors and nurses in the ICU at the University of Vermont Medical Center. Special thanks to doctors Jennifer Gilwee and Julian Sprague for their care over the years. A memorial service will be held Friday, April 24, 2015, at 3 p.m. in Billings North Lounge at the University of Vermont. Donations in Alan's memory may be made to the UVM Foundation - please designate contributions to unrestricted scholarship funds for students with high financial need; the Boys and Girls Club of Burlington; Women's Link Worldwide, dedicated to using the law to promote the rights of women and girls; finally, to any organization working hard to ensure that the two houses of Congress and the White House won't be controlled by Republicans in 2016. Boucher and Pritchard Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.


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Published in The Burlington Free Press on Apr. 15, 2015.
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16 entries
May 13, 2015
I knew Alan only slightly but his work has forever changed my research and that of many of my academic colleagues who work on ethical issues in research. His influence will endure for as long as people are concerned with ethical issues in research
Charles Lidz
May 6, 2015
Hello Sue
I am so very sorry to hear of Al's death. He was a fellow traveler through UVM and a great mentor to Kara.
I hope that you have the support you need to get through this time.
Susan Alnasrawi
April 29, 2015
My sincere condolences to the Wertheimer family. Professor Wertheimer was the most amazing professor I had at UVM. His teaching had a profound effect on me and spurred me on to get a master's degree in political philosophy. He literally changed the way I saw the world.
Kara Alnasrawi
April 23, 2015
Warm thoughts and deepest condolences to Susan and family.
Stacey Demko
April 17, 2015
This is the only obituary I ever read that made me smile, and I think Alan---with his wit and humor-- would have liked that.
Jennifer
April 16, 2015
My deepest sympathy to Sue and the
rest of Al's family and friends. I had
the special opportunity of doing team
teaching back in the old Nixon era.
He taught me a lot then and has been
in my thoughts ever since. I think
kindness toward others he knew and those he didn't know was his outstanding virtue.
Dick Flannery
April 16, 2015
I will miss Alan as a bridge partner and friend. Alan may have lectured and written books on ethics - but he not only talked the talk - he walked the walk. He practiced what he preached in the game of bridge which he loved. On the occasions where he or his partner may have inadvertently misled an opponent in violation of the bridge rule of ethics- he would invariably take steps to remedy the damage, usually commenting: "I can't help it. It's in my DNA". My sincere condolences to Susan and her family.

Jay
Jay Friedenson
April 16, 2015
I knew Alan much less well than others, mainly admiring his work from afar, until I got the chance to spend a day with him at a conference at Duke a few years ago. I was so flattered that he was interested in what I had to say.

He was in my pantheon of lucid, penetrating, candid thinkers, and his generosity towards me was such a thrill.

My deepest sympathy to the family.

Norm Fost
Norm Fost
April 16, 2015
My condolences to Alan's family. He was a professor of mine at UVM my freshman year and there's no one that challenged me and had so substantial an effect on my thinking and work to date. He was kind, generous and funny. Discussions in his class were open and hard and discussions one-on-one were even better.

One of my favorite memories was going out to dinner with him and a visiting scholar one night, I was a terrified student with two powerhouses and he found a way to make everyone comfortable, sharing stories, making self-deprecating jokes and generally owning the table.

He will be missed.
Dennis Robillard
April 16, 2015
To the Wertheimer Family:
Please accept my heartfelt condolences.
Alan was my first academic advisor when I was a student at UVM.
He was kind, candid and inspiring. He helped many students at UVM throughout the years and he made meaningful contributions to help make UVM a great school.
Thinking of all of you as we remember him and how he impacted all of us.
Sincerely,
Frank Cioffi
UVM Alum and UVM Trustee
Frank Cioffi
April 15, 2015
Very sorry about Alan's passing, Layton and I enjoyed the times with Jay and Alan playing as a team in Saratoga at the bridge regional. Good guy, good man.
Bill Wade
April 15, 2015
My condolences to Alan's family and friends on his passing. My college years as a young man adapting to a quickly changing world were enriched by Alan during his participation in the Experimental Program. He and his colleagues encouraged independent thinking and civil dialogue in our attempts to effect meaningful change in our society. Despite the years that passed after that time, in our subsequent encounters, Alan always remembered me and expressed good wishes in my endeavors. A good man, surely missed.
Lars Larsen
April 15, 2015
Dear Becca and family, I'm very sorry for the loss of your dear Dad. Though I did not have the pleasure of meeting him I know he was a remarkable person and dedicated scholar. My deepest sympathy to you and your family at this time. You are in my thoughts and prayers.
Deborrah Jabar
April 15, 2015
Very sad news of Alan's passing. Our sincere condolences to Susan and family. Alan was a wonderful colleague to have had for many years as well as an outstanding scholar and teacher. He will be missed by many. May he now rest in peace. George and Stella.
George Moyser
April 15, 2015
Dear Susan, saddened by Alan's death, I'm recalling his cool reasoning and kind manner. He was a model UVMer! My heart goes out to you. Phil
Z. Philip Ambrose
April 15, 2015
We will miss you Alan. Love and strength to your family.
Tom & Lisa Beilstein
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