Beloved Professors Retire

Celebrating two highly valued teachers, colleagues and friends.

After more than 70 years of collective service to the University, Professors Sid Rudolph and George Williams retired this spring. They were honored for their service and achievements to the department on February 24, 2010.


Sid Rudolph joined the department in 1981 and after a brief hiatus, came back in 1983. At the time, the department was engaged in the development of new curriculum involving desktop computers, which intrigued Rudolph. Since then he has been deeply involved in undergraduate curriculum and taught many undergraduate courses, including the lower division labs, algebra and calculus-based physics and introductory astronomy courses. He was also heavily involved in the ACCESS Program for Women in Science and Mathematics, as an instructor for 19 years, as well as serving as director for ten years. He admits that teaching has always been his passion. “What we do in the classroom can have an effect in ways we cannot foresee”. Rudolph received the Students’ Choice Award as well as the University Distinguished Teaching award in 2001

A physics textbook cake, presented to both professors, commemorating their dedication to teaching.

Having previously worked in New Jersey at Bell Telephone Laboratories, and Stanford University, coming to the University of Utah in fall of 1964, was exciting for George Williams. He was impressed by the growing department and enamored by the scenic Wasatch mountains and Salt Lake Valley. He started out doing research on microwave propagation in bismuth and antimony, but it was teaching that Williams most enjoyed. Williams served as Associate Chairman for the department from 1975-1983. He has taught many courses over the years, and has won several awards including the University Hatch Prize for Excellence in Teaching (2002), the University Distinguished Teaching Award (1990), and the Deseret News Outstanding Physics Teaching Award (1979). He also served as a judge for the Sterling Scholar program.

Emeritus professor Fritz Luty (left) congratulating Rudolph at the retirement celebration.

Over the next several years, both professors will still maintain a presence in the department; training new faculty, advising students. George Williams is slated to teach again in the fall. Both professors will be warmly remembered for their years of service to the department.