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University community mourns for Donald Kinsman
February 2, 1998

Donald M. Kinsman of Storrs, emeritus professor of animal science at the University of Connecticut, died January 29. He was 74.

Kinsman suffered a stroke Friday, January 23, while on a cruise ship in the Caribbean. The ship was diverted to the nearest hospital at Kingston, Jamaica, and on Monday, January 26 Kinsman was flown by air ambulance to Connecticut. In a coma since Friday, he died Thursday night at Hartford Hospital.

A professor in UConn's College of Agriculture and Natural Resources (CANR) for 32 years, Kinsman was an international expert in animal and meat science. He devoted his career to developing students ­ through his teaching and counseling ­ and improving food production.

He introduced and directed a program that has enabled UConn students to study throughout the world. He visited more than 30 countries and helped attract some 40 international animal and meat scientists to UConn. His contributions to both developed and developing nations also were made through the Heifer Project International and the Foreign Agriculture Organization of the United Nations.

A U.S. Senate-appointed member of the National Organic Standards Board from 1992-1996, Kinsman was a widely-quoted spokesman for the group when the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) released new standards in 1997. He was the Board's principal authority on livestock production and products.

Born May 20, 1923 in Framingham, Mass., he earned his bachelor of science degree at the University of Massachusetts in 1949. He received his master of science degree at the University of New Hampshire in 1951, and his doctoral degree at Oklahoma State University in 1964. He served in the Marine Corps from 1942 to 1946, serving with the 4th Marine Division, Asiatic Theater in three campaigns and received a Purple Heart and a Presidential Citation.

Kinsman joined the UConn animal science faculty as an assistant professor in 1956. He previously was an instructor at the universities of New Hampshire and Vermont, and an assistant professor at the University of Massachusetts.

He retired from UConn on September 1, 1988. In 1988-1999, he was the interim director of the UConn Program for Intercollegiate Athletics (CPIA).

Kinsman was the author or co-author of more than 75 articles published in professional journals. He was co-author of Muscle Foods: Meats, Poultry and Seafood Technology, published in 1994 by Chapman and Hall of New York. His International Meat Science Dictionary (American Press Co., Boston, 1978) has been translated into nine l anguages, and his International Sausage Book, published in 1981, is used in more than 40 countries.

He was the recipient of numerous awards and honors, including the American Science Association (AMSA) International Award. "His entire professional and private life has been dedicated to education of students and service to mankind, especially on a global basis," the AMSA proclaimed when it presented Kinsman with the award at its 1996 annual meeting.

In 1997, Kinsman was named to the Centennial Honor Roll of Alpha Zeta, the Honor Society of Agriculture. Founded on the principles of scholarship, leadership, fellowship, and character, the organization chose Kinsman as one of the 100 top agricultural leaders in the nation.

He received the 1993 International Animal Agriculture Award of the American Society of Animal Science (ASAS); the 1990 Teaching Award of the American Society of Animal Science; and the 1989 Distinguished Service to Agriculture Award from Gamma Sigma Delta, University of Connecticut Chapter.

Kinsman twice served as a director of AMSA, and as its president in 1978-1979. He was chair of the ASAS Meats Research Committee, chair of its Teaching Committee, and a member of its International Committee. He also served with the Northeast Section of the ASAS, the Council of Agricultural Science and Technology (CAST), the New England Live Stock Conservation, Inc., and the Connecticut chapters of Gamma Sigma Delta and Phi Kappa Phi.

He was a member of the University Senate from 1971-1974 and from 1980-1988. In 1984-85 he was chairman of the Senate's Executive Committee. At the time of his death, Kinsman was a member of the University Senate Growth and Development Committee.

He was an adviser to the University's Block and Bridle Club (a national student animal science organization) and the Alpha Gamma Rho fraternity.

Kinsman was a founder and a director of the Mansfield Retirement Community (a $3.2 million, 100-unit complex), and from 1985-1994, he was a board member of the Mansfield Nursing Home and Rehabilitation Center (a $10 million, 90-bed facility).

A long-time member of the Storrs Congregational Church, he was a deacon from 1966, chairman of the church council in 1967 and a ministerial review committee member from 1981 to 1984.

He is survived by his wife, Helen (Bailey) of Storrs, Conn.; two daughters, Martha Kinsman of Vernon, Conn., and Elizabeth Keefe, and her husband, William, of Reston, Va.; a son, David B. Kinsman, and his wife, Sharon, of Arlington, Va.; four grandchildren; and a brother, Robert S. Kinsman of Encino, Calif.

Memorial donations may be made to the Endowment Fund of the Storrs Congregational Church, N. Eagleville Rd., Storrs, CT 06268, or to the Kinsman International Agriculture Fund, UConn Foundation, c/o Nancy Weiss.

Burial will be private in the Storrs Cemetery. A memorial service will be held at the Storrs Congregational Church at 2:00 p.m. on February 2.

Mark J. Roy