In Memoriam: Patricia Buffler, 1938-2013

bufflerPatricia Buffler, who held the Kenneth and Marjorie Kaiser Chair in Cancer Epidemiology in the School of Public Health at the University of California at Berkeley, died late last month after suffering a stroke in her campus office. She was 75 years old. At the time of her death, Professor Buffler was leading several studies on childhood leukemia and other childhood cancers.

Dr. Buffler was a native of Doylestown, Pennsylvania. After earning a bachelor’s degree in nursing at The Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C., she worked as a public health nurse in Harlem. She was married in 1962 and moved to California as her new husband was pursuing a Ph.D. in geology at the University of California at Berkeley. She also enrolled at Berkeley and earned a master of public health degree and a Ph.D. in epidemiology.

From 1974 to 1991, Dr. Buffler served on the faculty at the University of Texas. In 1991, while serving as a professor of epidemiology at the University of Texas School of Public Health in Houston, she decided to join the faculty and serve as dean of the School of Public Health at Berkeley. She served as dean for seven years, before stepping down to concentrate on teaching and research.

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