Harold Emil ("Bud") Rorschach, Jr. (1926-1993) was a passionate educator and an enthusiastic and broadly knowledgeable mentor to his colleagues. During his career at Rice he taught more than five thousand undergraduates in his courses. H e guided twenty-seven students to the Ph.D. degree in his areas of research, experimental low temperature physics and biophysics, and he was a leader and moral force among the faculty. Born and raised in Tulsa, Oklahoma, Rorschach served as an electronics technician in the Navy during World War II. He attended the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where he earned his B.S., M.S., and Ph.D. degrees, completing his studies there in 1952. At Rice, he rose from Instructor to Professor, and was named Sam and Helen Worden Professor in Physics in 1981. He served twice as chair of the Physics Department (1966-73 and 1991-93) and was Visiting Professor of Physics and Pediatrics at Baylor College of Medicine. He was awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship in 1961, won Rice's George R. Brown teaching awards six times, and was a Fellow of the American Physical Society.
Bud Rorschach had the remarkable quality that made the many people he met think they commanded his entire attention and thoughtful involvement, yet he devoted himself to a surprisingly wide spectrum of constituencies, including his family and friends, his colleagues at all levels at Rice University and in the academic and research world beyond, his church, and the Houston community. The Rorschach Lectures are intended to reflect his broad concerns and interests, including the impact of physics on the greater body of knowledge and culture.
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