Category Archives: Transitions

In Memoriam: Carl O. Graffunder (B.Arch '42)

Carl O. Graffunder (B.Arch ’42), an esteemed Minnesota architect, passed away on August 27, 2013, at age 94 from a brief illness with pneumonia. Graffunder received his Bachelor of Architecture degree with distinction from the University of Minnesota in 1942, entered the Navy where he worked as a naval architect, and received his Master of Architecture degree from Harvard University in 1948. In 1946-47 Graffunder was chief draftsman for Antonin Raymond, who was regarded as the father of modern architecture in Japan and New York City.  Graffunder returned to Minnesota after graduating from Harvard and became a design critic for the School of Architecture under the leadership of former dean Ralph Rapson. In addition to teaching until 1986, Graffunder ran his…

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In Memoriam: Joan Lee (Whitney) Sharp (B.S. Home Economics '59)

Joan Lee (Whitney) Sharp (B.S. Home Economics '59) earned her degree with high distinction in what was known as the College of Agriculture, Forestry, and Home Economics. An involved student, Sharp was the recipient of the Caleb Doer academic scholar award twice, a member of both Phi Upsilon Omicron and Omicron NU, and was also involved with two other academic honor societies that cannot be identified. She passed away March 7, 2012, but not without making a stamp on her communities. Sharp's teaching career spanned 28 years and included all levels from preschool through high school in Del Rio, Texas; Little Rock, Arkansas; Bellvue, Nebraska; and the Air Academy School District in Colorado Springs, Colorado. In 1990, she received her…

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In Memoriam: Chad Sowers (Ph.D. Design '13)

Chad Sowers (Ph.D. Design '13) passed away July 6th at the age of 32. He suffered a heart attack while visiting his family in Canby, Oregon. Chad was a graduate student in Design and just completed his Ph.D. in May. He was looking forward to starting an assistant professor position at Louisiana State University this fall. He received his bachelor's degree in Apparel Design from Oregon State University, and completed his master's degree in Apparel Merchandising at Colorado State University.While at the University of Minnesota Chad was the lead research assistant in the Human Dimensioning¬© Lab (see video below), where he held the Phelps Research Assistantship. He was lead teaching assistant for the textile course and taught several Apparel Design…

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