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NIH Record


Former NCI Scientist Joftes Dies

By Francis X. Mahaney, Jr.

Steven Shaffer, 48, a member of the NIH Evening Speakers Toastmasters Club, passed away unexpectedly at his parents' home in Baltimore on Jan. 2. He worked as a cartographer at the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration.

Dr. David L. Joftes

Dr. David L. Joftes, who served as chief of the National Cancer Institute's Contracts Review Branch until his retirement in 1989, died Nov. 11 at his home in Delray Beach, Fla., of pancreatic cancer. He was 72.

He joined NCI in 1974 as chief of the National Organ Site Program. He later moved to the Division of Extramural Activities where he was chief of the Contracts Review and Referral Branch, and later chief, Contracts Review Branch.

"He was a man who constantly strove for perfection," said Dr. George J. Galasso, executive director of the National Foundation for Biomedical Research. "He was a great credit to the NIH and the scientific community he served."

Joftes was born in Brooklyn, N.Y. During World War II, he served as a machine gunner in a U.S. Army armored infantry regiment in Europe and was subsequently wounded, for which he received the Purple Heart among other military decorations.

He received a master's degree in 1947 from Tufts University and earned his doctorate in biology from Boston University in 1951. He was a research associate at Boston University from 1950 to 1952. He then served at a U.S. Air Force atomic warfare directorate from 1953 to 1954.

From 1954 to 1967, he was head of radiobiology at the Cancer Research Institute at New England Deaconess Hospital and was a research associate in pathology at Harvard University Medical School. He also served as an adjunct professor of biology at Boston University from 1966 to 1967.

His early research career involved studies on radiation risks, as well as the benefits of radiation treatment. He came to NIH in 1967, through the Grants Associates Program. He then joined the Mental Retardation Program, NICHD, in 1968 until he came to NCI in 1974.

He spent his leisure hours gardening, taking photographs and traveling. He and his wife Rosalyn (also a former NIH employee) enjoyed many trips including visits to Asia, the Caribbean, Europe, New Zealand, as well as parts of the U.S. His camera was always with him. He retired to Florida and spent summers in Vermont. Never one to waste his talents, he served as a volunteer at Florida-Atlantic University, where he wrote a manual on clinical research committee reviews. He also taught reading and mathematics.

Joftes was a member of the New York Academy of Science, the Thyroid Association, and the American Society of Cell Biology among other affiliations. He is survived by his wife, of Delray Beach, and his daughter, Linda Carlton, of Bethesda.

Harold Fournelle Mourned

Dr. Harold J. Fournelle, 87, a former Public Health Service officer who retired from NINDS in 1973, died Jan. 3 at the Naval Hospital in Bethesda following complications of a stroke. He had lived in Bethesda since 1961.

He was born in White Bear Lake, Minn., and earned his undergraduate and doctoral degrees in microbiology at the University of Minnesota.

Following 8 years of service with the Arctic Health Research Center in Anchorage, Alaska, where he studied soil and water-borne bacteria responsible for enteric diseases in many Eskimo villages, he was assigned for 2 years to the U.S. mission to Colombia. There he helped establish a bacterial identification laboratory at the Universidad del Valle.

In 1961 he came to NIH's Clinical Center, where he worked in the old Environmental Services Branch's bacteriology lab. He then moved to the Division of Research Grants' microbiology fellowship review committee, where he was executive secretary for 8 years. He spent the last 3 years of his NIH career at NINDS as executive secretary of the research training committee.

Fournelle was a fellow of the American Public Health Association and a member of the American Society for Microbiology, among other affiliations. He is survived by his wife, Louise K., of Bethesda, two sons, Dr. John H., of Madison, Wis., and Joseph B., of Germantown, Md., and four grandchildren. His sister and a niece also survive.

A memorial fund in his name is being established with the Arctic Institute of North America, 2500 University Dr. NW, Calgary, Alberta, Canada T2N, 1N4.

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