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July 2011

In Memoriam: Herschel W. Leibowitz, PhD (1925-2011)

Arch Ophthalmol. 2011;129(7):898. doi:10.1001/archophthalmol.2011.167

Herschel W. Leibowitz, PhD, a noted vision scientist, educator, and philanthropist, passed away on February 13, 2011, in State College, Pennsylvania. He was 85 years old. He began his collegiate studies at the University of Pennsylvania and obtained his PhD from Columbia University in 1951. Following this, he was a faculty member at the University of Wisconsin from 1951 to 1960, a research manager at IBM from 1960 to 1962, and faculty member at Pennsylvania State University from 1962 until 1995, where he was awarded an Evan Pugh Professorship in 1977.

Herschel W. Leibowitz, PhD

Leibowitz published more than 250 articles in scientific journals, with an emphasis on the application of basic visual properties (eg, visual psychophysics, oculomotor adjustments, peripheral vision, size, distance, and motion perception) to real-world problems (eg, aviation, traffic safety, night vision, motion sickness, postural instability, and the effects of stress). He received numerous awards from the American Psychological Association, the American Academy of Optometry, and many other organizations. Leibowitz also trained many students who went on to develop productive research careers in a variety of disciplines. In additional to his academic pursuits, he was also an avid runner and participated in more than 15 marathons. Leibowitz left a memorable legacy and will be missed by all who knew him.