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Ronald Jenkins (1932-2002)

Dr. Jenkins, born in 1932 in Oxford, England, died peacefully on June 19, 2002 of prostate cancer at his home in Downingtown, PA. A Celebration of Life service was held at the West Chester Church of the Nazarene, West Chester, PA, June 22, 2002.

Dr. Jenkins studied Chemical Physics at Oxford Polytechnic Inst. in England and obtained his Ph.D. from Polytechnic Inst. of New York. He was a Licentiate of the Royal Inst. of Chemistry, a Fellow and Chartered Physicist of the Inst. of Physics, a Distinguished Fellow of the Int’l Centre for Diffraction Data (ICDD) and an Honorary Member of the British Crystallographic Assn.

Dr. Jenkins worked as an analytical chemist at Esso Research in Abingdon, England, and later as head of the X-ray Applications Lab for Philips Electronics in the Netherlands. He was transferred to the US in 1971 and became the Principal Scientist for Philips Electronics Instruments. In 1985 he accepted the position of Principal Scientist with the ICDD and in 1996 was appointed its Executive Director.

Dr. Jenkins was well known around the world for his contributions in the X-ray analytical science fields of spectrometry and diffractometry. He wrote 4 widely used text books on these subjects, 11 book chapters, and published about 230 scientific papers. He taught these subjects around the world to an estimated 5000 students, organized scientific meetings, including the Denver X-ray Conference for 30 years, established the International Journal of X-Ray Spectrometry, and received numerous awards and recognition for his work, including the Birks Award for X-ray Spectrometry and the Barrett Award for X-ray Diffraction, the only person to ever win both awards.

In addition to his technical achievements, Dr. Jenkins was a member of STURP (Shroud of Turin Research Project) and lectured over 50 times to about 6000 people regarding the artifact. His book Closing the Gap between Science and Religion outlines his dedication to the Christian faith. He was most recently a member of the Church of the Nazarene, where he served as Council member and Choir Director. He was also a trustee of Eastern Nazarene College in Quincy, MA, USA for many years.

Dr. Jenkins is survived by his wife of 47 years, Phyllis, five children and five grandchildren. Instead of flowers, the family requests that donations be given to the American Cancer Society.

International Center for Diffraction Data
9 July 2009