Eldon Eugene Posey (1921-2008)

Posted on December 16, 2015

Born in Oneida, Tennessee on 25 January 1921, Eldon Eugene “Gene” Posey received his B.S. in Mathematics from East Tennessee State before obtaining his Master’s and Ph.D. degrees from the University of Tennessee. While enrolled at East Tennessee State, Posey left college and signed up as a Cadet in the Air Force in 1941. Eventually he attained the rank of Captain in the Air Force. He flew 50 combat missions during the Africa campaign (also some in Sicily and Italy) and was promoted to squadron leader.

His first position after receiving his Ph.D. from the University of Tennessee was as a mathematics professor at West Virginia University (1954–1959). In 1959 he took a position at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University (1959–1964).

In 1964, he accepted a position as a professor in the Department of Mathematics at Woman’s College (now UNCG). At the time he was hired, he was one of only two faculty in the department with a PhD (the other being department head Anne Lewis). When Posey stepped down as head in 1980, the department had sixteen Ph.D.’s and nine instructors with master’s degrees. Under Posey’s leadership, the mathematics department started two new graduate programs: the Master of Arts in Mathematics and the M.Ed. in Mathematics Education.

He retired from teaching in 1988, and died on May 7, 2008.

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