Department honors Dr. James Tammen: Department Head (1963-1976)

Posted: May 25, 2011

The Penn State Department of Plant Pathology is very pleased to announce the development of The James F. and Marilyn L. Tammen Memorial Endowment for International Plant Pathology.

Dr. James Tammen, who passed away in July, 2010, was one of the founding members of the Department of Plant Pathology at Penn State and served as its first Department Head from 1963-1976.  It was through his leadership and guidance that the Department quickly became one of the best-known academic Plant Pathology departments in the world.  The hundreds of successful alumni who have graduated with degrees in Plant Pathology at Penn State and the current national prominence of the department are a testament to the course of excellence that he charted during his tenure as Head.

As Department Head of Plant Pathology at Penn State and later as Dean and Director of International Programs in Agriculture at the University of Minnesota, Dr. Tammen strongly supported the need for international student experiences for professional development.  In honor of his commitment to international studies, the planned endowment will provide funds to support international education and research opportunities for students and faculty engaged in plant pathology studies abroad. 

With the assistance and support of his wife, Marilyn, Dr. and Mrs. Tammen often took a personal interest in the lives of graduate students and colleagues.  Together, they fostered a sense of family among all who were connected with Plant Pathology.  As a result, that sense of community still exists among his friends, colleagues, and alumni today. 

Contributions to the Tammen Endowment may be directed to The College of Ag Sciences Development Office, Attention Mark Theiss, 240 Agricultural Administration Building, University Park, PA  16802 (814-863-8027; ).  Please make checks payable to The Pennsylvania State University, with the notation “Tammen Endowment, code XCATM.”  Contributions can also be made on-line using a credit card at: