Robert Kennedy

Raised so far


Dr. Robert (Bob) Kennedy (September 13, 1931 – June 17, 2019) was a UBC alumnus, professor, and former Dean of the Faculty of Forestry.

He was a wood scientist who combined a university career with research in forest products and wood behaviour for industry. His association with the UBC Faculty of Forestry began following his graduation from the State University of New York, where he received his Bachelor of Science degree in 1953. While at UBC he was awarded the degree of Master of Forestry in 1955 and served as an instructor between 1955 and 1961.

After completing a PhD at Yale University (1962), Dr. Kennedy was with the Faculty of Forestry at the University of Toronto from 1962 until 1966, when he returned to BC to join the federal government’s Western Forest Products Laboratory (now FPInnovations), on the UBC campus, serving as Laboratory Director from 1975 to 1979.

Dr. Kennedy returned to UBC Forestry in 1979 and served as Dean of the Faculty from 1983 until his retirement in 1991.

In 1971, Dr. Kennedy was named a fellow of the International Academy of Wood Science. He was active in a wide range of national and international professional and forest-industry organizations, including the Forest Products Research Society, the International Union of Forest Research Organizations, the Canadian Forestry Association and the Canadian Institute of Forestry. Until his appointment as Dean of Forestry in 1983, he was one of only two members of the Faculty of Forestry who served on the UBC Senate. Dr. Kennedy also served as Vice-Chairman of the BC Forest Resources Commission and as President of the International Academy of Wood Science.

After his retirement, he remained connected with the Faculty as Dean Emeritus, as part of the Dean’s Circle as an informal advisor to the Faculty, as a mentor to graduate students and as a philanthropist, by supporting students through the Robert and Averil Kennedy Forestry Graduate Scholarship, along with his wife, Averil.

The impact of your support

Dr. Bob Kennedy graduated with a bachelor’s degree from Syracuse University and, like many young people, felt a need to hit the road. “I knew I wanted to do graduate work, and the Pacific Northwest seemed interesting,” he said. Thousands of kilometres and three flat tires later, Dr. Kennedy arrived at UBC in 1953.

With both the journey and the destination in mind, Dr. Kennedy and his wife Averil established a scholarship to support the forest industry in the Canadian context. Your gift will pay tribute to Dr. Kennedy’s life and career, by supporting graduate students studying wood science at UBC.

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