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Nina Byers

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Nina Byers Obituary
January 19, 1930 - June 5, 2014 Nina Byers, a prominent theoretical physicist, passed away at her home in Santa Monica on June 5, 2014, succumbing to a hemorrhagic stroke. She was born to Irving and Eva Byers on January 19, 1930 in Los Angeles. She was married to Arthur Milhaupt, Jr. until his death in 1987. She is survived by her niece Morissa, nephew Mark, extended family, colleagues, students and life-long friends scattered throughout the globe. Nina was a pioneering physicist contributing to both our understanding of particle physics and superconductivity. She received her BA with highest honors from UC, Berkeley in 1950 and her M.A. and Ph.D. from the University of Chicago in 1953 and 1956, respectively and an M.A. from the University of Oxford in 1967. Nina began her career as a Research Fellow at the University of Birmingham, England in 1956. She moved to Stanford University in 1958 before beginning her long relationship with UCLA as an Assistant Professor in 1961, the first and the only female in the Physics department for over 20 years. In 1967, Nina accepted a position as the first woman Lecturer in Physics Department at Oxford and split her time between Los Angeles and Oxford until 1973. Nina served as President of the American Physical Society Forum on History of Physics in 1982. She retired in 1993, but was an active Professor Emeritus until her passing. She was vigorous in her efforts to increase the representation of women in physics and worked to document their accomplishments, which culminated in her book Out of the Shadows : Contributions of Twentieth-Century Women to Physics. During her long career, she was a visiting scholar at Harvard and Oxford and held several fellowships and published numerous papers. In addition to her passion for Physics, Nina never stopped learning about the world around her. She was politically aware, advocating against nuclear weapon proliferation for over six decades, and a staunch anti-war activist. She also supported many social justice and environmental causes. Her passions also included the Arts, with a love of classical music, film and an inclination to contemporary art and theatre. Nina, a truly independent and inspirational woman, whose genuine warmth immense heart, will be greatly missed by her global family. Her wishes are to have her ashes laid to rest at Woodlawn Cemetery in Santa Monica, CA. There will be a memorial service for her there in early autumn.
Published in the Los Angeles Times on June 29, 2014
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