Please join us this Friday, March 15 at 10:00am, 3308 MLB, in celebrating the life and legacy of our beloved colleague, Ton Broos. 

Ton passed away on March 1, 2024, in his home in Ann Arbor. 

Ton joined the department in 1982. As the first continuous lecturer of Dutch at U-M, he directed the Dutch program for 30 years, until 2012. During this time, he was a leader in the Dutch Studies community, actively forging relationships across North American (US and Canadian) Dutch Studies programs, and hosting the Interdisciplinary Conference on Netherlandic Studies (ICNS) in 1986 and 2002. 

As Director of the program, Ton inherited two very successful collaborations with the Netherlands: the Netherlands Visiting Professorship (1950-2008) and the Dutch Writer-in-Residence program (1981-2005). Through these programs, and with his love for Dutch literature, he hosted some of the most prominent Dutch writers on our campus, including E. M. Beekman, Hugo Claus, Hella Haasse, Astrid Roemer, and Kader Abdolah. In addition, Ton helped to found the De Vries – VanderKooy Memorial Lecture series (inaugurated in 1996), which continues to today. Perhaps most visionary was Ton's development of the Anne Frank course in 1993, which continues to be one of the department's most popular courses, now integral to the Dutch Minor. 

In his retirement, Ton continued working on his own projects, delivering the ICNS 2016 keynote address on our campus. One day before he passed, the University of Michigan honored his legacy with the celebration of the "Dutch Tract Project", generously sponsored and led by Ton for the past years. At the event, Ton was presented with a framed copy of a Dutch pamphlet about the Vrede van Westfalen, in our university collection. We are very grateful for this last moment, and we will miss Ton dearly. 

The event is an open house format. Please feel free to walk in at any point.