Who's Who Top Educators

Donald Anthrop, PhD

Title: Professor Emeritus
Company: San Jose State University
Location: Gardnerville, Nevada, United States

Donald Anthrop, PhD, professor emeritus at San Jose State University in California, has been recognized by Marquis Who’s Who Top Educators for dedication, achievements, and leadership in environmental studies.

During a purposeful and celebrated career that spanned more than four decades, Dr. Anthrop is best known for his part in securing the passage of Redwood National Park legislation enacted by President Lyndon B. Johnson in 1968 with Dr. Anthrop invited to present at the signing ceremony. Leading up to this action several years earlier, the National Geographic Society paid the National Park Service to conduct a special study that required Dr. Anthrop’s expertise and, amid opposition from the timber industry, resulted in the establishment of Redwood National Park on California’s north coast and the discovery of the world’s tallest tree. This landmark achievement further sparked his interest in the environmental field. In 1969, he became a research scientist at the federally-funded Lawrence Livermore Laboratory in California and began teaching. Soon afterward, Dr. Anthrop secured his permanent role as professor of environmental studies at San Jose State University from 1971 to 2004. 

Prior to Dr. Anthrop’s arrival at San Jose State, there were no programs in environmental science. He, therefore, helped create the overall curriculum and individual courses that he taught. The perennially inquisitive educator was particularly interested in the local air quality, which progressed into specializing in energy and water issues as related to environmental science. At that time, Dr. Anthrop recalled, there was a big push to work on environmental issues specifically within the state college system.

Growing up on a small farm in Indiana, Dr. Anthrop learned the virtues of hard work and education from his parents, whom he credits for his success along with college professors who served as his mentors. He established a firm scholastic and professional foundation for his future accomplishments, earning a bachelor’s degree in chemistry from Purdue University in 1957 and a PhD in materials engineering in 1962 from the University of California, Berkeley before starting his first position as a research scientist from 1962 to 1964 at Avco Corporation, a defense and aerospace company in Wilmington, Massachusetts. 

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