a sustained period of growth in both student enrollment and research programs. He then served as UT Arlington’s vice provost for research and as dean of graduate studies from 1996 to 1997. He returned to the classroom, teaching electrical and industrial engineering courses until his retirement in May 2000.
A noted authority on space sciences, John was frequently called on to serve as an advisor on investigatory committees and commissions. He was a member of the Space Studies Board of the National Academies and the Advisory Committee on the Future of U.S. Space Programs and coauthored the Center for Strategic and International Studies report A More Effective Civil Space Program with co-chair Brent Scowcroft.
John was recognized by several professional organizations for his technical knowledge and service. He was a fellow of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA), and the Washington Academy of Sciences and a member of the National Academy of Engineering. In addition, he was presented with a NASA First Space Shuttle Flight Achievement Award and Medallion, a NASA Apollo Achievement Award and Medallion, a Silver Medallion from the Brazilian Institute for Space Research, a Bronze Medallion from the Soviet Merchant Marine, and the German Space Agency Medallion (for founding and chairing the International Committee on Earth Observation Satellites). In 1997, AIAA awarded John the International Cooperation Award “for creative leadership in the planning, negotiation, and execution of international participation in major U.S. Space Applications Programs.”
John was deeply respected and highly regarded for his personal values and the sense of warmth and friendship that he shared with all who knew him. He was above all a person of integrity and high standards.
John is survived by his wife, Eleonore (Ellie) McElroy. They were a devoted and inseparable couple over the 50 years of their marriage.
John is buried at the Veterans Memorial Cemetery in Boulder City, Nevada.