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Robert Woods Mann ’60

October 22, 2019, at his home in Oneida New York.

After attending Reed and the University of San Francisco, Robert worked as science editor for W.H. Freeman and Company, the book-publishing affiliate of Scientific American. While working as a technical editor and publications manager at Insurnet Inc. in the early ’80s, he wrote, “Until now, the software industry has paid little attention to the careful preparation of written documents. I believe that as we move into the era of the automation of everyday tasks, writing skills will become increasingly important. It is up to those developing computer application systems to find ways to make those systems as simple, clear, and even as friendly as possible.”

He spent three years designing a human-computer interface for universal form and document drafting systems.

A book Robert cowrote with Christopher McCullough, Managing Your Anxiety, won the 1986 National Psychology Excellence in the Media honorable mention award from the American Psychological Association. His play, The Wheel of Fortune, was read at the San Francisco Playwrights’ Center, and he also published several e-books, including The Candy Butcher: A Gothic Detective Story and Managing Your Anxiety: Regaining Control When You Feel Stressed, Helpless, and Alone.

He moved to New York when his friend Joan Westcott was injured in a car accident and in a coma for three months. Privately, he produced, filmed, and exhibited several short films, and became active in Green Party politics in New York State, including a run for Congress. A partisan of the Bob and Ray radio comedy show, Bob could always be relied on for his dry wit and his compassion. He is survived by his companion Joan Westcott.

Appeared in Reed magazine: June 2020

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