Prager, Stephen Died January 2, 2016. Stephen Prager was born on July 20, 1928 in Darmstadt, Germany. During the Nazi period, he emigrated with his family, first to Turkey and then to the United States. After obtaining a Bachelor of Science degree from Brown University, Stephen earned his Ph.D. in chemistry at Cornell University in 1951. He spent the next year as a research fellow at the University of Utah and then came to the University of Minnesota as Assistant Professor of Chemistry in 1952. He was promoted to Associate Professor in 1956, and to Professor in 1962. Steve founded the Theoretical Chemistry group in Minnesota, which has since grown and prospered. His early and continuing achievements have done much to pave the way for the growth and prosperity of this discipline. These included work on transport through thin membranes, statistical mechanics of microemulsions, coagulation and diffusion of polymers, behavior of polymers near surfaces, and theory of transport properties. Steve's accomplishments were characterized by elegance, clarity, and thoroughness. Throughout his career, Steve was an outstanding teacher of physical chemistry at all levels. He pioneered teaching techniques which combined both classical and statistical thermodynamics. Steve was an active member of the American Chemical Society including serving as associate editor of the Journal of Physical Chemistry for several years. He was named a fellow of the American Physical Society and for many years was the only such fellow in the Chemistry Department. In 1948 Steve married organic chemist Julianne Heller. They have since shared sixty-seven marvelous years involving their complementary careers and shared interests. He is survived by his wife, Julie, his sister-in-law Janet Gourley of Kittery, Maine, his cousin Inge Staffa and family of Berlin, Germany, as well as many friends and colleagues here in Minnesota and around the world. A gathering will be held at Waverly Gardens, North Oaks, later in February.

Published on January 13, 2016


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