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Memoir/Obituary

John Robert Effinger
Regents' Proceedings 145

Dean John Robert Effinger, of the College of Literature, Science, and the Arts, devoted forty-one years of his busy and successful life to the University of Michigan. He was graduated from this University in the Class of 1891 and in 1898 received the degree of Ph.D. here. Since 1892 he had been a member of the faculty, winning promotion to a professorship of French in 1912; his administrative talents, first exercised as Dean of the Summer Session, brought him appointment as acting dean and then as dean of the largest unit of the University. During these years he became known to thousands of students who passed through the college; there were few who had more friends or a wider acquaintance among Michigan alumni than he, and few alumni who preserved a keener or more active loyalty to their alma mater. To him is in large measure due the success of the college over which he presided with dignity and excellent judgment for the past twenty years. He called many distinguished scholars to its faculty, and by encouraging the younger teachers to further development and by forwarding the plans of departments, he maintained the academic division of the University at the standard set by the ideals of its founders. Leadership of faculty and students, in his case, was facilitated by an unusual capacity for making friendships and commanding the respect and affection of colleagues.

As a college administrator Dean Effinger was known far beyond the campus of this institution. He was honored with the presidency of the Association of American Colleges and was frequently called on by the Association of American Universities to undertake the difficult task of inspecting institutions of higher education. For the University of Michigan to be deprived with stunning suddenness of so loyal an alumnus and an officer so experienced through years of administration is a blow difficult to support; it is even harder to face the loss of the man whose genial friendship meant so much to the members of this Board and of the Faculties, and upon whose upright character and good sense they had learned to rely. The Regents of the University of Michigan hereby record in their Proceedings their profound sorrow at the death of Dean John Robert Effinger, and direct their Secretary, as a token of their sympathy, to communicate a copy of this resolution to his family.