In Memoriam

By ksascomm

thomas-cebulaThomas Cebula, a noted microbiologist and visiting professor in the Department of Biology, died October 29, 2014. He was 67.

A native of Plymouth, Pa., Cebula earned his doctoral degree from Johns Hopkins, and he also completed his postdoctoral work at Hopkins, as a National Cancer Institute fellow and a microbiology research fellow at the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine. In addition to teaching at the Krieger School, Cebula was chief science officer for CosmosID, where his research helped quicken diagnosis and treatment of disease. Before working at CosmosID, Cebula was director of the Office of Applied Research and Safety Assessment for the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, where he studied why some bacteria become resistant to antibiotics and other drugs and focused on the genetic mutations that lead to such resistance.

Known for his desire to protect the health of the American public, Cebula developed algorithms that could take a culture of bacteria and quickly determine which one of the bacteria was involved in the infection. It shortened the time a diagnosis could be made, from days to a couple of hours.

Cebula was a fellow of the American Academy of Microbiology and recipient of a Distinguished Service Award from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

john-baldwinJohn Baldwin, an expert in French history and professor in the Department of History, died February 8 of pneumonia. He was 85.

Born in Chicago, Baldwin grew up in New Jersey and Maryland. He earned a master’s degree from the University of Pennsylvania and his doctoral degree from Hopkins. He began his academic career teaching at the University of Michigan and returned to Johns Hopkins in 1961 when he was named an associate professor of history. Five years later, he was named full professor, and from 1986 until his retirement in 2001, Baldwin was the Charles Homer Haskins Professor of History.

Baldwin’s primary area of scholarship was 13th- and 14th- century French history—its political ideology, the structure of government, the educational system, and the lives of aristocratic courtiers. The author of 10 books on medieval French history, Baldwin was honored in France with the rank of chevalier in the Legion of Honor, the highest award bestowed by the French government, as well as membership in the Institut de France and the Académie des Inscriptions et Belles-Lettres.

Baldwin was the recipient of Guggenheim, Howard, Fulbright, and National Endowment for the Humanities fellowships and a grant from the American Council of Learned Societies.

hans-goedickeHans Goedicke, professor emeritus in the Department of Near Eastern Studies, died of cancer on February 24. He was 88.

A native of Vienna, Goedicke earned his doctoral degree in 1949 from the University of Vienna and then worked as an assistant at the Museum of Fine Arts in Vienna. From 1952 until 1957, he was a research assistant at Brown University and then spent a year working for UNESCO on digs at the Temple of Abu Simbel in Egypt.

Goedicke joined the Johns Hopkins faculty in 1960 as a lecturer in the Department of Near Eastern Studies. He was soon promoted to assistant professor and then associate professor, and in 1968 he was named full professor.

A world-renowned scholar of ancient Egypt, Goedicke conducted an epigraphic survey in Aswan, Gharb Aswan, and Gebel Tingar, and he was field director of the Johns Hopkins survey in the Wadi Tumilat in 1977, 1978, and 1981. In 1981, Goedicke posited that the exodus of the Israelites from Egypt took place 200 years earlier than previously thought, and was caused by a volcanic eruption on the Greek island of Santorini, which resulted in the flooding of low coastal lands in Egypt.

Goedicke was the recipient of numerous awards, including a fellowship from the Guggenheim Foundation. He was the author, co-author, or editor of close to 30 books and dozens of journal articles and reviews.

paula-pitha-rowePaula Pitha-Rowe, a research professor in the department of Biology, and an emeritus professor of oncology at the Sidney Kimmel Comprehensive Cancer Center, died March 5 of a heart attack. She was 77.

A professor of oncology, molecular biology, and genetics at the School of Medicine, Pitha-Rowe was also a scientist in the Krieger School where she taught undergraduate courses. She was known for her pioneering research that helped increase the understanding of natural cellular responses to infection and the relationship between viruses and cancer.

Her research has revealed a crucial role for a family of genes called interferon regulatory factors (IRF) involving antiviral responses and inflammation. Using genetically modified mice that are missing a critical component of the immune response, she developed mouse models to further study IRF mechanisms. This work is leading to clinical advances in vaccines and drug treatments of viral infections associated with cancer.

Pitha-Rowe received her doctoral degree in 1964 from the Czech Academy of Sciences in Prague, Czech Republic. Her training included fellowships at the National Research Council in Canada, Curie Institute in Paris, and the Salk Institute. She joined Johns Hopkins in 1971. Pitha-Rowe was the 2005 recipient of the G. J. Mendel Honorary Medal for Merit in Biological Sciences, and she was an elected fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.