Arthur F Thurnau Professor
3087 East Hall
Phone: (734) 763-2639
I received a B.S. in physics from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 1969, and spent the next eight years as a computer systems software specialist for Roper Corporation, a manufacturer of home appliances and lawn care equipment based in Kankakee, Illinois. After returning to the University of Illinois for graduate work, I received my A.M. in statistics in 1983 and my Ph.D. in mathematics in 1984. Beginning in 1983, I spent nine years on the mathematics faculty of Eastern Illinois University in Charleston before joining the Michigan faculty in 1992. From June 2002 through August 2004 I was on leave to the Mathematical Sciences Research Institute in Berkeley to serve as Deputy Director, but have now returned to the University of Michigan where I serve as Professor of Mathematics and Associate Dean for Undergraduate and Graduate Education for the College of Literature, Science, and the Arts.
My thesis was in functional analysis, specifically in nearest-point properties of sets in normed linear spaces, and my research interests center on problems related to rotundity and smoothness in Banach spaces. I have a book on introductory Banach space theory that has been published in Springer's Graduate Texts in Mathematics series.
I have also been very involved in the problems of minority mathematics education, especially that of Native Americans. I am a Sequoyah Fellow of the American Indian Science and Engineering Society, and work actively through the programs of this organization to further the participation of my people in mathematics. In particular, until recently I spent about one month every summer conducting mathematics enrichment programs for Native American students and their teachers at various sites, particularly on the Turtle Mountain Chippewa reservation in North Dakota.
I would be happy to discuss Banach spaces, the participation of minorities in mathematics, or mountain climbing (another passion of mine) with anyone interested. My contact information in the Mathematics Department is given above, and when I am in the Dean's Office (6525 Haven Hall) I can be reached at (734) 764-0320.