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Herb Fund to benefit physics and materials science

UW-Madison alumni Raymond G. and Anne W. Herb have created a fund to benefit the Department of Physics and the Materials Science Program in the College of Engineering.

Raymond was a graduate of the physics department and a professor there, retiring in 1972. In 1965, Herb and two of his students established National Electrostatics Corporation (NEC), in Middleton, Wisconsin.

Raymond G. Herb

Raymond G. Herb (large image)

Under Herb's direction, NEC became the world's leading manufacturer of electrostatic accelerators. The use of the accelerators has expanded to many fields, including medicine, the computer chip industry and pollution control. One machine built by NEC is in use at the Louvre Museum in Paris to help detect art forgeries, while two others are in place at either end of the England-to-France Channel to monitor cargo for hazardous or illegal substances.

Raymond and Anne ('43 BS, '44 MS SOHF), the parents of five children, appreciated the support offered by the UW during his years in the physics department. Herb also was a strong advocate of the American university system as a driving force in the world. In recognition, Herb's will assigned his shares in NEC to the University of Wisconsin Foundation. NEC, its officers and employees will buy back the shares over a period of years, with the income designated to create the Raymond G. and Anne W. Herb Fund.

The Materials Science Program will use most of its share of the fund to support graduate student fellowships. "We will put money in the new distinguished Graduate Student Fellowships, which essentially doubles our money," says Program Chair Professor Eric E. Hellstrom, materials science and engineering. "This donation is a tremendous asset for the Materials Science Program that will help us recruit top quality graduate students."

The physics department condensed matter group plans to use its share of the fund in the same manner, and "is equally enthusiastic about the prospects that this fund creates for recruiting and retaining the very best graduate students," says Department Chair Lee Pondrom.

Among his many honors, Herb received the College of Engineering's Distinguished Service Citation in 1994.

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