Keulks, George W.

Professor Emeritus

Professor George W. Keulks, 1938-1997

Professor Keulks was born in East St. Louis, IL, on April 2, 1938. In 1960, he obtained his B.A. from Washington University. His M.S. in chemistry was obtained from the University of Arkansas in 1962, working with Professor S. Siegel. He obtained his Ph.D. from Northwestern University in 1964 working for Professor Hussey on the kinetics of competitive hydrogenation of olefins. Prior to joining UWM, George was a postdoctoral research associate for a year with Professor Paul H. Emmett at The Johns Hopkins University during 1965-1966. George was instrumental in having Professor Emmett spend time-in-residence at UWM on several occasions. Professor Keulks joined Gulf Research and Development Company, working there during 1964-1965. During his stay in Pittsburgh he became acquainted with Professor W. Keith Hall, and this led to Hall's appointment as Distinguished Professor of Chemistry at UWM (1973-1985). Professor Keulks served as Dean of the Graduate School at UWM from 1975-1997. He had been a faculty member in the Chemistry Department, UWM from 1966-1997. Professor Keulks was, as his successor at UWM writes,".., a tireless and effective advocate for quality research and graduate programs at UWM. He contributed substantively to UWM's development as a research university, and the institution's growing reputation, nationally and internationally, is due in no small part to his vision and perseverance. He was an outstanding chemist and a dedicated teacher: In spite of his administrative duties, George excelled as a teacher and researcher. He began research on catalytic oxidation at Gulf and continued these studies throughout his career. He made effective use of isotopic tracer techniques to add much to our understanding of this complex reaction mechanism. He was awarded with the Ernst Spaights Plaza Award in 2001.