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Campus memorial service for esteemed history professor Robert Brentano
22 January 2003

By Janet Gilmore, Media Relations

Berkeley - A memorial service will be held Wednesday, Jan. 29 at the University of California, Berkeley, for Robert Brentano, a beloved history professor who taught on campus for more than 50 years.

The service will take place from 5 to 7 p.m. at the Great Hall of the Faculty Club.

Brentano died Nov. 21 following an asthma attack. He was 76.

"When we lost Bob Brentano, we lost a great and treasured citizen of this university," said Chancellor Robert M. Berdahl. "Bob was a noted scholar, a dedicated teacher and a kind, yet forceful, leader. Above all, he loved Cal and, in return, he was beloved by his students. He will be dearly missed."

A scholar in medieval English and Italian history, Brentano joined the UC Berkeley history department in 1952 and never left. He wrote six books and served on numerous campus committees and boards, including the UC Berkeley Academic Senate, the faculty governing board, which he chaired in 1999. In 1986, the Council for the Advancement and Support of Education named him California Professor of the Year. In 1991, the campus's Academic Senate awarded him its top prize, the Clark Kerr Award for Distinguished Leadership in Higher Education. Last spring, he was honored by the International Congress of Medieval Studies.

Brentano was born on May 19, 1926, in Evansville, Ind. He received his bachelor's degree from Swarthmore College and his doctorate from Oxford University, which he attended as a Rhodes Scholar.

The memorial service is sponsored by the Department of History and the Office of the Chancellor.