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In Memory of Dr. James F. Tammen

Posted: July 27, 2010

Dr. Tammen was one of the founding members of the Department of Plant Pathology and its first Head.
Dr Tammen in 2006

Dr Tammen in 2006

Dr. James F. Tammen, one of the founding members of the Department of Plant Pathology and its first Head, passed away on July 27, 2010, at the age of 85. The Department of Plant Pathology expresses its deepest admiration and respect for Dr. Tammen. He will be lovingly remembered and deeply missed by his colleagues, alumni, and friends.

Dr. Tammen came to Penn State as Assistant Professor of Plant Pathology in 1956. The Department of Plant Pathology was established as an autonomous department in the College of Agriculture in 1963, and by popular demand of the faculty, Dr. Tammen was appointed the department's first head, a position he held from 1963 to 1976. Under his leadership the department flourished and achieved national recognition. In 1974-75 he served as President of the American Phytopathological Society and was a long-standing member and Fellow of APS. In 1976, he accepted an appointment as Dean of the College of Agriculture at the University of Minnesota; in 1981 he served as President of Oglevee Associates, Inc. He continued his career as Research Scientist and Director for Technology Transfer at the Institute of Food and Ag Sciences at the University of Florida. Dr. Tammen returned to Penn State and remained actively engaged with the department throughout his retirement, and most recently authored a “History of the Department of Plant Pathology, The Pennsylvania State University, 1956-1976.” On February 26, 2010, Dr. Tammen celebrated his 85'th birthday with “his” Department of Plant Pathology in Buckhout Laboratory. It was the wishes of the faculty that he be granted Emeritus status, and by special action of the University this honor was awarded to him in 2006. On September 22, 2006, the faculty of the Department of Plant Pathology passed the attached resolution in honor of Dr. James F. Tammen.