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Dr. William Lawrence Berzman


1926 - 2018 Obituary Condolences Gallery
Dr.  William Lawrence Berzman Obituary
Dr. William Lawrence Berzman

Shreveport, LA - Dr. William Lawrence Berzman passed away on Sunday, August 5, 2018, after a brief illness. A graveside services will begin at 10:00 am on Friday, August 10, at Forest Park Cemetery, St. Vincent Ave. Officiating will be The Very Rev. Alston B. Johnson, Dean of St. Mark's Episcopal Cathedral.

Dr. Berzman was born on April 24, 1926, in San Francisco, CA. He attended high school in Alameda, CA with a focus on training for the Annapolis entrance exams. He was appointed to Annapolis in 1943 by Congressman James Scrugham and his goal was to become a Naval Officer. With the war in full bloom, he enlisted in the Naval Flight Training Program and upon graduation was ordered to the University of Southern California to begin training. He was then transferred to Northern Arizona University and on to Saint Mary's pre-flight where he earned college and Navy welterweight boxing championships. At the end of the war, he returned to USC where he received his graduate degrees in speech pathology and clinical psychology, followed by a PhD at the California Graduate Institute.

His employment history includes group psychotherapist at San Quentin Prison and psychologist with the Marin County and Kentfield school districts, where he specialized in identifying and consulting in the fields of gifted child education and personnel selection. His skills in personality assessment produced an offer to become Director of Personnel in the Oxnard School District where he designed a program, judged in 1971 to be the best designed teacher recruiting and selection program in the United States. He was flown to Washington DC to personally receive the award, given by the Education Services Bureau, to which he became a consultant.

He continued his clinical practice, specializing in forensic evaluations, child custody disputes and long-term psychotherapy.

After leaving California, he and his wife, Dove Schroeder Berzman began traveling and preparing for a life of sailing, scuba diving and horseback riding. Their travels took them to England where they discovered the beauty of the rural English Countryside. This lead to a decision to retire and purchase a quaint 1500s listed cottage and stable block. This was to fulfill their love of raising horses, hunting pheasant and traveling Europe while Dr. Berzman could pursue his long-time hobby of woodworking and restoration. Their idyllic existence was interrupted by the need for Dove's beloved parents to have family members close to assist in their emerging medical needs. Before long, Dr. Berzman received an offer to become a psychological consultant to the Charter Hospital Group and ultimately as a resource to Highland Hospital in Shreveport. This was followed by an invitation to accept a position as Medical Consultant/Psychologist with the State of Louisiana, Department of Disability Determinations, a position in which he served from 1992 until 2015.

Dr. Berzman was preceded in death by his wife, Dove Schroeder Berzman. He is survived by his daughter, Susan Rifenbark; son, Lee Berzman; and grandchildren, Allen Morris, Kevin Morris, Gavan Berzman and Erin Chylinski.
Published in Shreveport Times from Aug. 8 to Aug. 10, 2018
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