In Memoriam

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John K. Galt ’41

A picture of John Galt

John Kirtland Galt ’41, June 12, 2003, in Albuquerque, New Mexico, from complications of Alzheimer’s disease. John earned a bachelor’s degree in physics at Reed, graduating Phi Beta Kappa, and entered MIT that same year. During his doctoral study in physics, he worked on projects concerned with underwater sound and with radar countermeasures for the Office of Scientific Research and Development. Following his graduation from MIT. in 1947, he studied for a year at the H.H. Hills Physical Laboratory at Bristol University under a National Research Council Fellowship. He was staff scientist and manager with Bell Laboratories in Murray Hill, New Jersey, from 1948 to 1974, where his research focused on magnetic and mechanical properties of solids, and of band structure by means of cyclotron resonance. From 1961 to 1974, John was director of solid state electronics research, concerned primarily with coherent optics, superconductivity, and with related materials problems. On leave from Bell, he joined Sandia National Laboratories in Albuquerque in 1974, as director of research for solid state sciences, and advanced to the position of vice president for research and later for components and computer operations, retiring in 1985. John worked as principle scientist for the Aerospace Corporation in Los Angeles from 1985 to 1990. His professional associations included the National Academy of Engineering, the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, the American Association for the Advancement of Science, and the American Physical Societies. Survivors include his wife, Marguerite Van Nest Galt, one of two sons, his brother, and a nephew.

Appeared in Reed magazine: November 2003

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