Marshall H. Becker

Marshall H. Becker, professor of health behavior and health education at the School of Public Health, died of cancer here on Nov. 26. He was 53.

Becker, who also was professor of health behavior at the Medical School, was internationally renowned for his research on patient compliance and psychosocial factors in health care. He was a pioneer in the study of how patients’ beliefs affect their willingness to follow medical regimens, and designed practical guidelines for physicians to follow when transmitting medical information to patients.

“Marshall was a man of extraordinary talent and accomplishment. He had a rare ability to blend scholarship with both wit and wisdom, and contributed so extensively to knowledge in the behavioral sciences that he occupied a towering position in the field of medical sociology,” said June E. Osborn, former dean of the School of Public Health.

“A consummate teacher, he drew hundreds of registrants to his classes, and hundreds of researchers to any presentation he made at national meetings. He was joy to work with, for his sense of humor was legendary, and his concern and humanity were a reliable reserve on which we could always draw during difficult times. We will miss him greatly.”

Born Jan. 18, 1940, Becker was raised in Manhattan. After earning his bachelor of science degree from the City University of New York in 1962, he received his master’s degree in public health in 1964 and his Ph.D. in medical sociology in 1968, both from the U-M.

Becker joined the School of Public Health as a researcher in 1968, leaving in 1969 to join the faculty at Johns Hopkins University. In 1977, Becker returned to the School of Public Health as professor of health behavior and health education, and as professor of health behavior in the Medical School’s Department of Pediatrics and Communi-

cable Diseases. He served the School of Public Health as chair of the Department of Health Behavior and Health Education in 1983–87, and as associate dean for academic affairs in 1987–93.

Becker was elected a member of the Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Sciences in 1987. During his career, he served on numerous public health research committees, including the National Research Council’s Committee on AIDS Research and the Behavioral and Social Sciences; and the Health Promotion Program Evaluation Advisory Committee of the Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation.

Becker received many awards, including the Leo G. Reeder Award for Distinguished Service to Medical Sociology from the American Sociological Association in 1992 and the Distinguished Faculty Achievement Award in 1988. He also received the Mayhew Derryberry Award from the American Public Health Association in 1982 and the Distinguished Fellow Award from the Society for Public Health Education in 1981.

Becker authored or co-authored 120 articles, and was editor of Health Education Quarterly in 1979–86. He also served on the editorial boards of six other public health journals.

Becker is survived by his wife, Felicia, and two children, David Becker of Honolulu, and Ruth Becker of Washington, D.C. Contributions may be made to the Marshall H. Becker Scholarship Fund, School of Public Health, 109 Observatory St., Ann Arbor, MI 48109. A memorial service will be held at a later date.

Horace M. Miner

Horace M. Miner, professor emeritus of sociology and anthropology, died Nov. 26 at the Chelsea Methodist Retirement Community. He was 81.

“Horace Miner was a distinguished social anthropologist, scholar and teacher,” said Ronald Freedman, the Roderick D. McKenzie Professor Emeritus of Sociology. “His books on a French Canadian community, St. Denis, on Timbuctoo in Africa, and on Fez in Morocco were major contributions to our knowledge of three very different kinds of communities.

“As his younger colleague from 1946 until his retirement, I observed him to be a skillful and sympathetic mentor to his students and a helpful and stimulating colleague. He was a co-author of the introductory textbook from which thousands of Michigan students learned about sociology in the first two decades after World War II. He set high standards in a gentle and kindly way for his students and colleagues.”

Miner joined the U-M in 1946 and was promoted to professor of sociology in 1951. He retired in 1980.

A native of Minnesota, Miner completed his undergraduate education at the University of Kentucky in 1933. He then attended the University of Chicago, where he obtained his doctorate in 1937. From 1942 through 1945, he served with the U.S. Army in Africa, Sicily and Europe. After being awarded the Legion of Merit, a Bronze Star and eight battle stars, he finished his military duty as chief of the Army’s Counter Intelligence Corps.

Miner is survived by his wife, Agnes of Ann Arbor; his daughter, Denise Stanford of Portola Valley, Calif.; and by two grandchildren. Memorial contributions may be sent to the Alzheimer’s Association, South Central Michigan Chapter, P.O. Box 1713, Ann Arbor, MI 48106.

Felix E. Moore

Felix E. Moore, professor emeritus of biostatistics, died in Reno, Nev., on Nov. 27. Moore, 81, was a resident of South Lake Tahoe, Calif.

Moore had a “distinguished career as a demographer and biostatistician, which was devoted to a better understanding of risk factors associated with disease and to improvements in human welfare,” said Richard D. Cornell, interim dean of the School of Public Health.

Myron E. Wegman, dean emeritus of the School of Public Health, said, “Felix Moore was a devoted teacher and researcher who not only led a new biostatistics department in providing essential teaching to public health generalists but also developed outstanding biostatisticians. Prof. Moore also played a key role in the building of the pioneering Tecumseh Project and the Center for Research on Diseases of the Heart and Circulation, and Related Disorders.”

Born in Ashland, Ore., in 1912, Moore received his B.A. in mathematics in 1934 from the University of Washington. Following graduate training at the University of Washington in 1934–35, he studied sociology at the University of Chicago in 1938–40. He entered the U.S. Bureau of Census in 1941 and served in the U.S. Army in 1942–46.

He was chief of the Biometric Research Section of the National Heart Institute in 1948–57. During this period he served as a member of the U.S. Bureau of the Census Technical Advisory Committee of Population for the Seventeenth Decennial Census. He also was a consultant to the Atomic Bomb Casualty Commission and to the World Health Organization.

Moore joined the U-M in 1957, and served as chair of the department of biostatistics in 1957–71. He retired in 1979.

He was a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the American Public Health Association and the American Statistical Association.

Moore is survived by his wife, Martha; son, William F. Moore of Portland, Ore.; and daughter Jeannette Stover of Ann Arbor. Grandchildren include Victor, John and Caroline Stover, and Alexander and Eric Moore.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Council on Epidemiology of the American Heart Association, 7320 Greenville Ave., Dallas, TX 75231.


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