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Saxon, David Stephen


SAXON, DAVID STEPHEN (1920–2005), U.S. educator and physicist. Saxon was born in St. Paul, Minnesota. He attended the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and received his B.S. in 1941 and his Ph.D. in 1944. In 1946 he became an associate physicist with Phillips Laboratories in New York and the following year joined the faculty of the University of California at Los Angeles as an assistant professor of physics. At ucla he became professor of physics in 1957, served as dean of physical sciences (1963–1966), vice chancellor (1968–1972), and executive vice chancellor (1974–1975). In 1975 he was elected the 14th president of the University of California and served until 1983.

Saxon's academic fields were theoretical physics, nuclear physics, quantum mechanics, and electromagnetic theory. In addition to being a renowned scholar, he was an outstanding academic administrator and a distinguished leader. In 1967 the ucla Alumni Association presented him with the Distinguished Teaching Award. After he retired from teaching, he became professor emeritus of physics and astronomy at ucla.

Among his publications are Elementary Quantum Mechanics (1968), The Nuclear Independent Particle Model (with A.E.S. Green and T. Sawada, 1968), Discontinuities in Wave Guides (with J. Schwinger, 1968), and Physics for the Liberal Arts Student (with W.B. Fretter, 1971).

[Frederick R. Lachman]

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