Posted October 13, 1999
Professor Erich Gruen Receives Austrian Cross of Honor
The Austrian government awarded Erich Gruen, Gladys Rehard Wood Professor of History and Classics, its prestigious Austrian Cross of Honor for Science and Arts at a packed ceremony in the Faculty Club Sept. 21.
Gruen was honored for his preeminence as a scholar of ancient Greece and Rome, including the history of Jews in the Greco-Roman world.
Ralph Hexter, dean of humanities, presided over the ceremony. Consul General Werner Brandstetter presented Gruen with a medal and a decree from the President of Austria.
"The Republic of Austria wished to recognize what Professor Gruen has accomplished in his field," said Brandstetter, "and to show that even though he had to leave Austria, we feel a certain closeness."
Born in Vienna, Gruen and his family fled Austria for the United States in 1939. He received his B.A. from Columbia University, an M.A. from Oxford and his Ph.D. from Harvard.
Gruen's many publications include "The Last Generation of the Roman Republic," "The Hellenistic World and the Coming of Rome," "Culture and National Identity in Republican Rome," and "Heritage and Hellenism: The Reinvention of Jewish Tradition."
Five UC Berkeley Extension instructors were recently named instructors of the year for their outstanding commitment and ability to teach adult learners.
The five, and their fields of instruction, are: Sharon Bassano, who trains ESL teachers; Cynthia Boardman, ESL for international students; Gary Blair, computer science and electronic engineering; Patrick Geddes, finance; and Joan Ellen Zweben, alcohol and drug abuse studies.