BUFFALO, N.Y. -- Brothers Vinod K. Rustgi, M.D., and Anil K.
Rustgi, M.D., along with their mother, Kamla Rustgi, are honoring
their father's memory by endowing the Moti Lal Rustgi Professorship
in the Department of Physics in the University at Buffalo's College
of Arts and Sciences.
The professorship honors the memory of Moti Lal Rustgi, who was
a professor in the UB Department of Physics from 1966-92. He died
on Nov. 16, 1992, at the age of 63. He lived in Amherst.
"We are grateful for the generosity of the Rustgis," said Bruce
D. McCombe, dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, and former
close colleague of Professor Rustgi. "Professorships are a way to
recognize superior performance and also attract quality faculty to
UB. We are thankful to the Rustgi family for lending this
distinction to the physics department."
The first endowed professorship in the UB Department of Physics,
it will be awarded to an exceptional scholar who has demonstrated
ability to conduct outstanding research. Like Rustgi, the faculty
member named to the professorship will be a world-class scholar.
The professorship will be used to enhance ongoing research efforts
and explore new ideas and directions.
"Our father was a bright, passionate scientist, educator, mentor
and administrator who served UB and the national physics
communities with distinction," his sons said in a statement. "Apart
from his nearly 150 publications in nuclear physics and related
fields, mentoring Ph.D. students and postdoctoral fellows,
presentations at national meetings, and fellowship in the American
Physics Society, his greatest traits were his sense of fairness,
integrity and professionalism.'
They continued: "These and other accomplishments and
characteristics have led us to endow the UB professorship in his
name, honor and memory as an enduring tribute to him. Of course, he
couldn't have done it without the unwavering support and dedication
of our courageous mother. We also wish to pay tribute to the
extended Rustgi family and friends in the Buffalo area, including
our dear uncle, Dr. Om P. Rustgi, and to the memory of Dr. Rajendra
Both sons were inspired by their father to pursue careers of
scholarly research in prestigious academic medical centers. Vinod
is co-director of the Transplant Institute and clinical professor
of medicine and surgery at Georgetown University School of
Medicine. Anil is the T. Grier Miller Professor of Medicine and
Genetics at the University of Pennsylvania. He is chief of the
Gastroenterology Division and director of the NIH- funded Center
for Molecular Studies in Digestive and Liver Diseases.
A native of Delhi, India, Moti Lal Rustgi graduated with honors
from Delhi University with a Bachelor of Science degree at the age
of 20; two years later he earned his master's degree in physics
from the university. Rustgi pursued doctoral studies at Stanford
University and later at Louisiana State University, where he earned
his doctorate in theoretical nuclear physics. In 1957 he completed
his dissertation, "Photodisintegration of the Lightest Nuclei," and
left LSU for Yale University to spend three years as a research
associate. Dr. Rustgi assumed faculty positions thereafter at
Harvard University, the National Research Council (Ottawa),
University of Southern California, and at Yale University.
Rustgi joined the UB faculty in 1966 and worked at UB for 26
years. He was a prolific researcher in the fields of medical,
nuclear, atomic and solid-state physics, with approximately 150
articles published in scholarly journals He was an expert on
Rustgi served the UB community with distinction, including as
director of graduate studies in the Department of Physics. He was a
visiting scholar at Oak Ridge National Labs, U.S. Naval Labs in
Washington, D.C., NASA (Langley, Va.), and SUNY/Stonybrook. His
professional and personal papers contain his prodigious pedagogical
and research efforts, his publications and the research of his
graduate students and fellows, totaling more than 20 such trainees.
These notes, notebooks, correspondences, and theses, which span
from 1952-92, were donated by the Rustgi sons to the UB University
Archives in 2003. Vinod and Anil established the Moti Lal Rustgi
Archive Fund in 2004 in support of the Archives efforts to process
and preserve science faculty papers. (Visit http://ublib.buffalo.edu/libraries/units/archives/ead/976/976.body.html
for more information.)
The generosity of the Rustgi family extends to the Moti Lal
Rustgi Memorial lecture, a program that brings internationally
regarded researchers to the UB campus. The lecture program was
established in 1993, and since its inception, has included four
Nobel Laureautes. This year's lecture will be held on April 6.
for more information.)