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Victor H. Denenberg was born April 3, 1925, in Chicago, Illinois, and raised
in Washington, D.C. He served in the Army  (95th Infantry) in World War II
at age 18-19, and was wounded in action. He spoke once to his students about
his service, saying only “We were advancing to the beach. Other kids were
dropping their machine guns and running back. We went forward.”

Vic attended college on the GI Bill, and graduated from Bucknell
University in 1949 with a BA in Psychology. He went on to receive a Ph.D. in
1953 in Experimental Psychology at Purdue University. He also served the US
Military in Fort Knox, Kentucky, as a statistician in the Human Resources office.
In 1954 he was appointed Assistant Professor of Psychology at Purdue
University, where he remained through 1969.

Vic had 4 daughters from his first marriage -- Carol, Susan, and Julie, as
well as Nancy who passed away several years ago. He also had a son, Jeffrey
Lewis, who died in infancy.

In 1969, as a tenured Professor at Purdue University, he was recruited to
a newly created program in Biobehavioral Sciences at the University of
Connecticut, in Storrs, CT, where he served as Professor, and subsequently
Acting Head/Coordinator (1984 – 2000). He married Evelyn Thoman in 1975,
with her 6 children bringing their total brood to 10. He was enormously proud of
his children and step-children, speaking of them often, and he and Evelyn
decorated their home almost exclusively with professional art by their offsping.
He and Evelyn also maintained a large menagerie of animals including dogs of
various sizes, cats, and a goat that many of his graduate students were taught to
milk. Vic enjoyed chess, reading, and skiing, and also learned to cook later in life.
He relished cooking for others, and always enjoyed a good meal.

Vic retired as Professor Emeritus in 2000, and accepted a position as
Visiting Professor at the University of Washington, near his new home in
Issaquah, WA.

Over the course of his career, Vic published nearly 400 scholarly papers
and chapters, including several statistical texts. He served on various National
committees relating to early development, and spoke nationally and
internationally at more conferences than can be counted. He served as reviewer
for innumerable scholarly journals, and received upwards of 5 million dollars in
federal and private research funding to support his ongoing research on the early
development of the brain and behavior. He is listed in Whoʼs Who, was invited to
Russia for the 100th Anniversary celebrating Pavlov and was noted as a national
expert in both statistics and also the role of early experience in development. He
was also a founding/charter member of the Society for Neuroscience, a
conference where over 30,000 scientists now meet annually. However, his most
notable academic achievement was unquestionably the 70+ MS and PhD
graduate students that he trained and nurtured over the course of his career --
most of whom have advanced to National and International appointments of their

Vic was beloved by his students for his wit and intelligence, his outstanding
ability to judge character in his students, and his willingness to work with them to
enhance their strengths and overcome their weaknesses -- always while
providing large amounts of positive feedback and unconditional support. Vic was
always delighted to debate moral and ethical dilemmas, and to discuss broad
issues that his students might later refer to as "the big picture." He was a stickler
for details but never got lost in them, always finding a way to place context
around any finding or event. He always looked down the road to the next
question, the next experiment. For many of his students, he will be remembered
as one of the critical figures that changed their lives. He was truly a visionary and
philosopher, and will be deeply missed.

                                          Picture of VIc as a young professor at University of Connecticut, 1972.

 Gathering of former graduate students in honor of Vic's retirement, summer 2000.