Sally Lyman Allen, of Ann Arbor, Mich., died November 13, 2012 at age 86, after a brief illness. Allen was professor of biology at the University of Michigan for over 30 years and was a tireless and dedicated researcher and lecturer. Allen's research at the U-M focused on the genetics and evolution of the ciliated protozoa and she was recognized as a national and international leader in this field, maintaining a lab in the Natural Science Building where she nurtured many Ph.D. candidates.
As a devoted teacher, Allen's classroom activities focused on the large junior-senior course for genetics majors. Through her efforts, this important course remained relevant and embraced the revolutionary advances in the genetics field. She was just as devoted to the honors course in genetics. Her students always mattered most.
Allen received her A.B. degree from Vassar College in 1946 and her Ph.D. from the University of Chicago in 1953. At Chicago she investigated mouse genetics with two of the most famous geneticists of the 20th century, Sewall Wright and George Snell, who later received a Nobel Prize for the work in which she participated. Allen was a very fun loving and creative individual.
Photo credit: David J. Bay