Tag Archives: obituary

In Memoriam: Gertrude Esteros (B.S. HEEd ’36, M.S. HEEd ’41)

Gertrude Esteros

Gertrude Esteros (B.S. HEEd ’36, M.S. HEEd ’41), who for three decades led what is now the Department of Design, Housing, and Apparel, died on December 2nd. She was 102. During her time at the University of Minnesota, Esteros served in a variety of positions, from instructor to professor to division chair. She headed the Department of Related Arts, as it was then […]

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In Memoriam: Donald Wexler (B.Arch ‘50)

Donald Wexler, a prominent Modernist architect based in Palm Springs, passed on June 26 at age 89. Wexler enrolled in the University of Minnesota’s school of architecture after serving in the Navy during WWII, and graduated with a Bachelor of Architecture in 1950. After graduation, Wexler left Minnesota’s cold winters for Palm Springs, where he worked under Desert Modernist William […]

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In Memoriam: Ann Birt (BS ‘56, Home Economics)

Ann Birt (BS ‘56, Home Economics and Related Art) passed away on June 9, 2015. She will be remembered for her positive energy, generosity, and love of travel, art, and design. Birt graduated from the College of Home Economics in 1956 with a focus in interior design. After a decade abroad in Milan and Tokyo, she founded Ann Birt Interiors […]

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In Memoriam: John Weidt (B.A. Arch '67)

John Weidt, founder of the innovative practice, The Weidt Group, passed away on April 8, 2014. He was a pioneer for energy and environmental stability in the built environment. In the 1960's John was one of the first to scientifically research the embodied energy and environmental impact of the production of building materials. Weidt was also a member of the College of Design Dean's advisory board.John created The Weidt Group in 1977 and slowly built the firm into a national presence by the mid 1980's. He did this through research and development contracts with national labs and major building manufacturers. Continually trying to advance his interest in energy and sustainability, he and the firm, developed methods to provide energy design…

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In Memoriam: Mary Ellen Sullivan-Rickey (B.F.A. Studio Art '78)

Mary Ellen Sullivan-Rickey (B.F.A. Studio Art '78), a former lecturer in the Department of Design, Housing and Apparel at the College of Design, died on March 28, 2014 after a courageous but brutally short journey with Leiomyosarcoma. She had many overlapping careers as a remarkable artist and insightful teacher. She taught design, painting, drawing, color theory, and fashion illustration at the Minneapolis College of Art and Design, the University of St. Catherine, and finally at the University of Minnesota in the Department of Design, Housing and Apparel. She was a consummate clothing designer and tailor who blossomed in her ultimate creative calling designing costumes for VISTA Theater Productions.Read MoreA celebration of her life will be held at the Convent…

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In Memoriam: Charlotte Jirousek (M.A. Home Economics '82, PhD DHA '88)

Charlotte Ann Jirousek (M.A. Home Economics '82, PhD DHA '88), Associate Professor and Curator at the College of Human Ecology at Cornell University, died February 12, 2014 of a sudden severe heart attack. She was 75. Charlotte was born in 1938 and raised in Minneapolis, Minnesota. She obtained her B.A. in Sociology at Hamline University, and was part of the folk blues revival scene. She served in Peace Corps Turkey, and her lifelong passionate love of that country inspired much of her research and writing. Having been a social worker, mother, fiber artist, and leading member of the Minnesota weaving and crafts community, she completed her PhD in Applied Design at the University of Minnesota at the age of forty-four,…

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