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Robert E. Briney       Professor Emeritus (retired)

     A.B., Northwestern University;
     Ph.D., Massachusetts Institute of Technology

In Memoriam
It is with sadness that we announce the passing of Dr. Robert E. Briney, professor emeritus and former chair of the Computer Science and Mathematics Departments.  Dr. Briney, a graduate of Northwestern University who received his doctorate in mathematics from MIT, was a member of the Salem State faculty for 40 years, retiring in 2008.  A highly respected mathematician who taught at MIT, Purdue and as an invited lecturer at the National Science Foundation Summer Institute in Algebraic Geometry at Bowdoin College, he began his tenure at Salem State College in 1968 as a professor of mathematics, serving two terms as chair of the mathematics department prior to becoming the founding chair of Salem State?s computer science department in 1977 and serving four terms as chair.  His contributions to the development of the computer science major were essential to its approval in 1984 and formed the core of the curriculum that received ABET accreditation in 2003.  A published academic with memberships in several professional mathematics, applied engineering and computing societies, Dr. Briney was involved in workshops, manuscript review and other professional activities.  In addition to serving on several departmental governance committees,  Dr. Briney was a longtime, dedicated member and secretary of the College Curriculum Committee.  He received the Distinguished Service Award three times (1979, 1982 and 1983) during his tenure with the university.  
Robert Briney?s avocations, however, were in the fields of mystery writing and science fiction/fantasy.  A free-lance writer and editor, he contributed verse, short stories, columns, essays, reviews and miscellaneous pieces to numerous magazines including Classical Outlook, The Armchair Detective and Journal of Popular Culture.  He was a member of the Mystery Writers of America and the Science Fiction Research Association.  He was a leading expert on the author Sax Rohmer and the fictional master criminal Dr. Fu Manchu.  At one time, he lectured on aspects of crime and mystery fiction during the summer at the University of California, San Diego and at MIT.  He enjoyed friendships with fellow mystery aficionados from across the U.S. and Canada.
A memorial for Dr. Briney has been scheduled for Tuesday, February 7th beginning at 12:30 p.m. in the Martin Luther King Conference Room of the Ellison Campus Center on North Campus.