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STANFORD -- John Katsufrakis, professor (research) emeritus of electrical engineering, died of cancer Sunday, Nov. 27 at his home in Los Gatos. He was 69.
Services are scheduled for 10 a.m. Friday, Dec. 2, at St. Nicholas Greek Orthodox Church, 1260 Davis St., San Jose.
While at Stanford, Katsufrakis was responsible for the supervision of all Antarctic field operations and research conducted by the Electrical Engineering Department from the early 1960s through his retirement in the mid-1980s..
Katsufrakis, a native of Dawson, N.M., earned his bachelor's degree in electrical engineering from Stanford in 1960. He made 22 trips to Antarctica during his academic career, promoting scientific research and establishing research facilities at the Siple Station. Research conducted at the Siple Station involved studying the relationship between the earth's magnetic field and the atmosphere.
In 1966, the U.S. Board of Geographical Names honored Katsufrakis by naming a 12,000-foot-high peak in Antarctica after him.
“I've flown over it about eight times,” the engineer said of Mount Katsufrakis at the time, “but never took much notice of it. I had no idea it would be of any particular significance.”
"His service to Stanford was truly outstanding," said his colleague, electrical engineering Professor Umran Inan.
In 1981, Katsufrakis received the Distinguished Public Service Award from the National Science Foundation, and in 1972 he was awarded a bronze medal by the Soviet Academy of Sciences for his contributions to scientific research in Antarctica.
After earning his bachelor's degree Katsufrakis was a research associate from 1960 to 1967, a research engineer from 1967 to 1971, a senior research engineer from 1971 to 1974 and was named adjunct professor in 1974.
Katsufrakis is survived by his wife, Helen; a daughter, Joan Cameron of Los Gatos; a son, Maj. Peter Katsufrakis, U.S. Air Force, of Minot, Neb.; two brothers, four sisters and four grandchildren.
The family prefers donations to the American Cancer Society and the Mid-Peninsula Hospice. -pr-
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