In Memoriam

In Memoriam   San Jose State University lost several valued colleagues this year. We are honored to have known them, and remember them here.


Kenneth Blasé

A Kansas natice and U.S. Army veteran, Blasé received his bachelor's degree from Kansas State University, his master's degree from SJSU and a law degree from Lincoln Law School in San Jose. He began his news career at KAYS TV in Kansas and for 10 years served as a news director at San Jose's KXRX Radio, while also teaching journalism at West Valley College. In 1974, he joined the Department of Journalism and was promoted to full professor in 1987. He retired in 2005.

Loy Silberts Braley

A native of Schenectady, N.Y., Braley received his undergraduate and graduate degrees from the University of Buffalo. He taught for 30 years in the Department of Psychology, hired in 1964 as an assistant professor. He was promoted to full professor in 1970 and retired in 1994. For many years, he volunteered as an ombudsman at the Heritage Skilled Nursing Facility in Paradise.

Ernie Bullard

Bullard was hired as an assistant professor in the Department of Human Performance in 1968 and served as assistant track and field coach. Named head coach in 1970 following Bud Winter's retirement, Bullard's coaching record includes six finishes in the Top 10 in nation dual meet rankings and seven conference titles. A standout pole vaulter at USC in the 1950s, he returned to his alma mater to coach in 1984.

Leon Charles Dorosz Jr.

A native of Baltimore, Dorosz received his master's degree from the University of Illinois and his doctorate from UC Berkeley. Hired as an assistant professor in the Department of Biological Sciences in 1970 and promoted to full professor in 1981, he served three separate terms as chair of his department. He retired in 2008 as associate vice president, Undergraduate Studies and Curriculum Development.

Rebecca Herrold

A native of Warren, Pa., Herrold began taking piano lessons when she was five years old and was awarded a full scholarship to the University of Miami. She received her master's degree in music from SJSU in 1969 and her doctorate from Stanford. She joined SJSU's Department of Music Education in 1980 as an associate professor and was promoted to full professor in 1984. She authored two college textbooks, Mastering the Fundamentals of Music and New Approaches to Elementary Classroom Music.

Jules Jammal

An alumnus of SJSU, Jammal received his BFA in animation/illustration in 2006 and joined the Department of Design as a lecturer two years later. Past president of the award-winning Shrunkenheadman Animation/Illustration Club on campus, he interned at PDI DreamWorks.

John Sperling

A native of Willow Springs, Mo., Sperlind received his bachelor's degree at Reed College and his doctorate in economic history from the University of Cambridge. He joined the humanities faculty in 1961 and retired in the 1970s to found and serve as president of the for-profit University of Phoenix. One of the largest for-profit colleges in the U.S., the University of Phoenix grew to include more than 100 locations and an online-only study program, making Sperling, the largest shareholder, a billionaire. He is credited for developing an educational model built on the "customer first" philosophy.

Sidney Tiedt

A native of Chicago and U.S. Navy veteran, Tiedt received his bachelor's degree and master's degree from Northwestern University. He taught and fished in Alaska before earning his doctorate from the University of Oregon. In 1961, he joined SJSU's Department of Elementary Education as an assistant professor and was promoted to full professor in 1970. He retired in 1999.

John Rhoades

He was born in Valley City, North Dakota, and served in WWII with the Army Corps of Engineers in the Pacific Theater. After the war, John returned to Valley City where he met and married his wife, Marily, in 1948. They moved to Idaho, Montana, Minnesota, and eventually settled in California. Along the way, he took his BA, MA, and Ph.D degrees, teaching various subjects, and finally settled in Campbell, CA, when he began a 37 year career at SJSU. His field of study was Science Education. In 1964, he took temporary leave to move his family to the Philippines where he spent two years setting up schools in rural areas. He loved the outdoors, fishing and camping with his family, singing in the Church choir, and taking students on field trips. He is survived by his wife, Marilyn, four sons, five grandchildren, and one great granddaughter.

Thomas Tutko

Born in Gallitzin, PA, he joined the Marines after high school, and then went on to earn a doctorate in Psychology at Northwestern University. He came to SJSU in 1961 and taught a variety of psychology classes. Always popular with students for his lively personality, he was nominated for the "Distinguished Teaching Award." He was an energetic, witty public speaker with a strong passion for sports. He was invited to give speeches all over the US and on popular TV shows, including Johnny Carson's. He wrote five books, including one with his colleague Bruce Ogilvie, Problem Athletes and How to Handle Them, in which they presented a motivational inventory test designed to improve athletic performance. He and Ogilvie worked with several professional teams, including the SF 49ers and Miami Dolphins. He leaves behind his loving wife Kathy, several children and grandchildren, and a beloved caregiver of seven years, Jose Alvarez Zamora of Aptos, CA.

Dominique van Hooff

Born in Besancon, France, she took her BA in English at the University of Besancon then earned her MA (1975) and Ph.D (1985) in French Literature at Brigham Young Univ. She came to SJSU in 1989 after having taught at DeAnza and Menlo colleges and the College of Notre Dame in Belmont. She taught French literature and was a favorite of students. A role model who mentored and inspired many of them, she also was a caring mother-figure who occasionally brought cookies to class. She served as Chair of the Department of World Languages and Literature from 2003 to 2013, and was a member of the Academic Senate. She was also a member of Palmes Academique, a prestigious honorary society established by Napoleon, and was elected President of the American Association of Teachers of French. She published numerous articles on French writers and painters and co-authored a best-selling Intermediate French textbook, En Bonne Forme. Dominique leaves behind a large family, consisting of her husband Walter, her two sons, her parents, and eight sisters and one brother.

Helen Merrick

Helen was sui generis. Born in 1919 to Russian parents in Romania, she moved with the family to NYC, landing at Ellis Island when she was five. Speaking Russian at home, she quickly became fluent in English, studied French in high school and left with a prize in German. But Spanish was her language of choice: "it's feisty; fun to speak," she said, and she spent her college summers in Mexico, absorbing the culture and accent. Helen earned a BA at the Univ. of Colorado and an MA at UC Berkeley (1958) in Spanish. She taught at San Leandro High School, traveled to Russia as a Group Leader with a State Dep't. cultural exchange program, and pursued an MA in Russian at Indiana Univ. Helen was always energetic and daring. When SJSU was demolishing old houses containing faculty offices to make way for new buildings, Helen bought one of the original two-story houses, moved it to a lot she bought two blocks away and rented it out as residential apartments. While working toward a Ph.D in Linguistics at Stanford, she was teaching full time at SJSU and managing 17 residential units. After retiring, Helen moved to Hawaii in 2007, and took up new interests: hula, ikebana, Japanese brush painting and trampoline. Yes, trampoline. She became Female Champion (Pacific Region) in the Over-90 Category. She retired from competition at age 93, but continued jumping for fun until 95. Helen is survived by two daughters, a granddaughter and two great grandchildren, most of whom live in Hawaii.

Winter 2014 Newsletter | In Memoriam | New Staff in Faculty Affairs | New Tenure-Track Faculty | Newly Tenured and Promoted | Our Role in Campus Diversity | Sabbatical Awards | Spring Fling