Preskenis Dinner Main
First - 2003
Second - 2004
Third - 2005
Fourth - 2006
Fifth - 2007
Sixth - 2008
Seventh - 2009
Eighth - 2010
Ninth - 2011
Tenth - 2012
Eleventh - 2013
We, the members of the Mathematics Department, honor
the memory of our dear friend and colleague Kenneth J. Preskenis
annually by hosting an NES/MAA Regional Dinner Meeting at Framingham
State University in the Spring. The first NES/MAA Preskenis Dinner
Meeting was held in Spring 2003.
A Tribute to Kenneth J.
A dedicated teacher committed to excellence. A serious
scholar. A popular son of South Boston. A gentleman. Ken Preskenis died
of a heart attack on Thanksgiving Day, 2002.
Ken Preskenis had a passion for mathematics and for sharing that love
with others, especially, youngsters. A relentless pursuer of knowledge,
he was a regular participant at the weekly seminars in functional
analysis at Brown University. To celebrate the 100th anniversary of
Weierstrass Approximation Theorem, Ken played a singular role in
organizing a two-day conference in 1985 at Framingham State University (FSU),
which was well-attended by high school teachers and college faculty. His
extension of the approximation theorem in 1984 was a significant
Ken was a torchbearer in the promotion of quality in teaching and had
high expectations of his students. In fact, he expected and demanded
quality and accountability both inside and outside the classroom. He
always encouraged students to excel in their studies and at work.
His mathematical interests, however, were not confined to the classroom
or his office. He relayed his love of mathematics to young children
through the Mathematics Olympics Program that he initiated at Southie's
five parochial schools while he was on a sabbatical leave.
A South Boston Little League coach for 43 years, Ken often used baseball
to promote mathematics, its power, and its beauty. He would use the
sport to instill discipline, patience, and hard work, and to help
players to understand mathematics and its intricate nature. An avid
storyteller, he would entertain his classes with baseball jokes.
Ken served as the Program Co-Chair for the NES/MAA Fall 1990 meeting
held at FSU, which had a record number of participants; this record
still stands today. A member of the Local Arrangements Committee for the
Fall 2002 meeting, he was active at the registration desk, registering
participants, telling stories, and meeting new members. He presented
contributed papers at nearly every Fall meeting of the Section and at
numerous national conferences.
After graduating from Boston College High School in 1957, Ken entered
Boston College; he graduated four years later. He received his M.S. in
1967 and Ph.D. in 1971, both from Brown University. Three years later,
he did postdoctoral work at Aarhus University, Aarhus, Denmark.
He joined the faculty at FSU in 1977 after teaching at Newton College
and then at Boston College for a total of 14 years. He chaired the
mathematics department at Newton College for six years.
An author of a number of articles in analysis and mathematics education,
a regular attendee and contributor at NES/MAA meetings, a South Boston
Athletic Hall of Famer, and a recipient of the Michael E. Glynn South
Boston Community Service Award, Ken and his enthusiasm will be greatly
missed by the mathematics community and especially the Section.
Top of Page
First - 2003: Andrew Browder, Brown
Second - 2004: Thomas Koshy,
Framingham State University
Third - 2005: Robert Devaney, Boston
Fourth - 2006: Edward Burger,
Fifth - 2007: Colin Adams, Williams
Sixth - 2008: Lisa Hansen, Western
New England University
Seventh - 2009: Harrison W. Straley,
Eighth - 2010: Annalisa Crannell,
Franklin & Marshall College
Ninth - 2011: David Abrahamson,
Rhode Island College
Tenth - 2012: Colin Adams, Williams
and Thomas Garrity, Williams College