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Former research administrator Hugh Clark dies at 91

September 12, 2005

Hugh Clark, a former administrator in the Graduate School, died on Aug. 24. He was 91.

Clark, who lived in Storrs, was a member of the UConn zoology faculty from 1947 until he retired in 1984. He was key in the development of the Department of Zoology, and was associate dean for research development in the graduate school from 1963 until his retirement. He also served as interim dean of the graduate school and acting vice president for graduate education and research. He was appointed associate vice president for graduate education and research in 1982.

His chief contribution, as noted by his colleagues at his retirement, was his pioneering role in developing UConn’s graduate and research programs. He was instrumental in the creation of the Research Foundation and, as its first director, guided the quality and growth of research at UConn.

“Hugh Clark’s outstanding feature was his feeling that the University of Connecticut was going to be a great school,” says James Slater, an emeritus professor of biology. “Everything he got into moved in that direction.”

He entered Clark University in Worcester, Mass., to study medicine at the age of 16. He earned his Ph.D. from the University of Michigan, and taught at the State University of Iowa and at Des Moines Still College of Osteopathy, where at the age of 30, he became the nation’s youngest college president.

Clark’s research included classic studies in developmental biology. He received the Alumni Association’s Award for Leadership Excellence in 1976. He was a member of several state research and policy-forming commissions, and was elected to the Connecticut Academy of Science and Engineering.

Clark co-wrote two books on the work of geneticist Walter Landauer and recently finished a book capturing his family history.

He is survived by his wife Ellen and four daughters.

Donations in his memory may be made to the Hugh Clark Memorial Fund, UConn Graduate School, 438 Whitney Road Extension, Storrs, CT 06269-1006.

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