Above photo: Linda A. Cicero / Stanford News Service
September 24, 1933 – June 2, 2014
On Monday, June 2, 2014, Stanford University lost an accomplished scholar and dedicated teacher, and the Center for Teaching and Learning lost its founder, Professor Emeritus David Halliburton of English. David played the definitive role not only in launching the Center and guiding it during its first crucial years but also in connecting a research-oriented faculty with the importance—and joys—of effective teaching.
When CTL was founded in 1975, there were no examples at private R-1s of teaching and learning centers that successfully attracted faculty, but David was convinced that it was possible, though he thought it would take 25 years. (And no one was happier than he when it took less time.) A sedulous scholar who easily crossed disciplinary boundaries and produced four major books and numerous journal articles while conscientiously teaching, mentoring, and serving in such demanding administrative roles as director of CTL and of the Program in Modern Thought and Literature, he believed in and advanced the complementarity of research and teaching.
All who knew him will also remember the ease with which he could derive meaning from the most obscure passages in Heidegger one moment and the next moment turn his attention to the solution of a pressing administrative problem. Above all, however, those of us fortunate enough to have worked or studied with him will remember his steady, gentle, approachable nature, his facility with even the most abstract thought, his lively sense of humor and infectious laugh, and his loyalty to family and friends, his students, and his purpose.
Michele Marincovich was Director of Stanford’s Center for Teaching and Learning from 1980 to 2013. She is now Senior Advisor to the Vice Provost for Undergraduate Education.