TULLY — Arden Peter Zipp, 75, died at home in Tully, surrounded by his family, on Tuesday, December 17, 2013. He fought melanoma optimistically for five years and encourages others to do the same so they may have even better success combating this dreaded disease. His five year battle was a study in courage.
Originally from Dolgeville, NY, he graduated valedictorian of his high school class in 1956 and cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa with a Bachelor of Science in Chemistry from Colgate University in 1960. He earned a Ph.D in Chemistry from the University of Pennsylvania in 1964. Arden taught chemistry for 43 years, two years at Drew University in Madison, N.J., and then 41 years at SUNY Cortland, where he served as department chair for two separate terms. During his career, Arden taught over 22,000 students. The SUNY Board of Trustees awarded him the title of Distinguished Teaching Professor in 1985.
Arden also provided service to his profession nationally in multiple ways, most notably by writing and correcting exams. He chaired the Advanced Placement (AP) Development Committee directed by the College Board. He also served as Chief Examiner in chemistry for the International Baccalaureate Organization and Chief Reader for AP Chemistry, and chaired the AP Chemistry Test Committee and the American Chemical Society (ACS) Olympiad Committee. He was the only person ever to hold all four of these positions. He initiated the Microscale Laboratory Column in the Journal of Chemical Education which he edited for ten years. He coauthored the first two editions of Chemistry in Context in 1990 and 1991, a revolutionary college chemistry text, and during the past year coauthored a review book for the AP Chemistry Examination. He authored or coauthored over 50 publications in chemistry and chemistry education and presented over 250 chemistry workshops and presentations for teachers at regional, national, and international conferences. He developed and taught 22 different courses while at Cortland.
In addition to his activities at Cortland, he enjoyed other opportunities for research and teaching at Brookhaven National Laboratories, University of Utah, Syracuse University, University of Virginia, University of North Carolina, SUNY Binghamton, and University of Rochester. He was awarded the prestigious Catalyst Award by the Chemical Manufacturers Association in 1991 for his service to chemistry education. The Syracuse ACS section recognized him for his contributions to local activities. He was active most recently as an ACS Science Coach at local schools. He was highly respected by his students, for whom he always had time, and by his colleagues at both the college and high school levels. He strove to make chemistry fun through demonstrations.
He is survived by his wife, Kathryn Vernay, of Tully; his daughters, Allyson (Deven) Zipp, of Albany, NY, and Alaina Zipp, of Portland, OR; and his grandson, Alexander Zipp, of Portland, OR. He is also survived by a sister, Andrea (Doug) Williams; a nephew, Charles (Rachel) Shaver; a niece, Christen (Daniel) Gullis; and a nephew, Chad Shaver, all of Mohawk, NY, a niece, Alecia (Kevin) McLaughlin, of Rochester; a nephew, Aaron (Sarah) Zipp, of Kansas; and multiple grandnieces and grandnephews. He was predeceased by a brother, Alan, in 1997.
Page 2 of 2 - Arrangements will be handled by Wright Beard Funeral Parlor in Cortland with calling hours scheduled on Friday, December 20, from 4 to 7 p.m. A memorial service is planned for early February at the Interfaith Chapel at Cortland State. In addition, a celebration of Arden’s life will be held at his home in early spring. Details will be announced on Arden’s Caring Bridge page at www.caringbridge.org (for patient ardenzipp1).
In lieu of flowers, the family requests that contributions be made to the Arden P. Zipp Scholarship Fund at SUNY Cortland and to Hospice of Central New York.
To offer online condolences, visit www.wright-beard.com.