Obituary Notice of
Professor Frank B. Golley

Obituary Notice of Professor Frank B. Golley

The Board of INTECOL are sad to announce that Professor Frank B. Golley, 76, the former President of INTECOL and Professor Emeritus at the University of Georgia Institute of Ecology, died in Athens, Georgia, USA on Sunday, October 8, 2006.

Frank Benjamin Golley, III, was born September 24, 1930 in Chicago, IL, USA to Frank Benjamin and Katharine Baird Golley. He obtained a BS in agriculture from Purdue University, an MS in wildlife management from Washington State University and a PhD in zoology from Michigan State University. Upon graduation in January 1958 he took a position as assistant professor of zoology at the University of North Carolina. He was convinced to come to the University of Georgia in September of that year where he remained until his death, a career spanning more than four decades.

In 1962 he helped establish the Savannah River Ecology Laboratory where he served as Director until September 1967 when he returned to the Athens campus. He was instrumental in the design of the building for the Institute of Ecology, and worked to ensure that it created an environment of openness between faculty, staff and students. He served as Administrative Director of the Institute until taking leave in 1979 to serve as director of Environmental Biology at the National Science Foundation in Washington, DC. After returning to Athens, he served as director of the Institute of Ecology from 1984-1987.

He has served in a wide variety of professional positions, including being president of the International Association for Ecology (INTECOL), the Ecological Society of America (ESA) and the International Society of Tropical Ecology (ISTE). In addition, he served on the Advisory Council of the Smithsonian Institution, the National Institute of Ecology and the Organization for Tropical Studies. He was on the committee to establish the State Botanical Garden of Georgia, and served as its interim director. He was also the founder and first editor of the Journal of Landscape Ecology.

Professor Golley had numerous publications, with approximately 40 books and chapters, and over 150 technical papers in ecology, biology, social sciences and history. He was in the middle of writing two books when he became ill. His interests encompassed a wide range, as he was known to have a love for academia itself. In 1993, he published A History of the Ecosystem Concept in Ecology, which combined his love for both history and ecology and has been nominated for various awards.

He taught extensively at the university level, with courses on ecology, mammalogy, environment and humans, and more. He served as major advisor for over thirty graduate students at the institute, many of whom have become major influences in landscape ecology. His thirst for learning went beyond his role as a professor, as last year, he enrolled in a class at UGA to learn more about one of his favorite authors, Vladimir Nabokov.

Professor Golley's research took him all over the world. In Puerto Rico, he helped assess the impact of a copper mine. In Greece, he assisted with planning a school of natural resources. He had cooperative research projects in Poland, Costa Rica and Venezuela. He participated in projects and lecture series in Japan on city greenness and environmental conservation. For thirty years he helped coordinate and taught a post-graduate course on rural planning and the environment with the Institute Agronomico Mediterranao de Zaragoza, Spain. He also served as a consultant on many projects in the US.

Besides academia, Professor Golley followed in the footsteps of one of his boat-building ancestors, and crafted a small sailboat. He was also a skilled leatherworker, and would make suitcases. He enjoyed playing the guitar and dulcimer, and had recently taken up icon painting.

While Professor Golley retired from UGA in 2000, he never stopped being a constant presence and influence on the institute. He was concerned with evolution of academia and the sustainability and preservation of the environment.

Surviving are his wife, Priscilla McKinzie Golley, to whom he was married for 53 years; Son, Frank Benjamin Golley IV and wife, Ruth of Decatur; daughter Dr. Priscilla Sue Golley and husband Milton Carlson of Sacramento, CA; daughter, Kathleen Annette Anderson of Athens; four grandchildren, Stuart B. Golley and Peter M. Golley of Decatur, and Zachary R. Anderson and Ashley A. Anderson of Athens.

The members of the INTECOL Board extend their condolences to his family. An appreciation of Professor Golley's great contribution to INTECOL will be published later.

The Obituary Notice was published in the Athens Banner-Herald on 10/10/2006 and available on-line.

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Last Updated: October 12, 2006