In Memoriam: Richard "Dick" W. Call


The Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution announces with deep sorrow the death March 11, 2011 of former Honorary Member, Richard “Dick” W. Call.  Dick was elected to the WHOI Corporation in 1998, and was a member of the Ocean and Climate Change Institute Committee. 

Richard William Call, a fourth generation Californian, was born in Los Angeles on October 17, 1924.  Dick earned his bachelor’s degree from Stanford University and his medical degree from Stanford Medical School, graduating second in his class.  He served as an officer in the US Navy during the Korean War, after which he attended Harvard to continue his medical education before returning to Los Angles to begin private practice in internal medicine with a specialty in cardiology. 

In 1957, he became the International Corporate Medical Director of the Union Oil Company and spent the next 35 years leading its medical department.  In addition, Dick was a visiting professor at the University of California, Berkeley, and the University of California, Irvine; he also taught Occupational Medicine at the USC School of Medicine.  In 1983, he became the President of the Seaver Institute, retiring in 1997. 

Dick served on numerous boards, including the Marlborough School in Los Angeles; the Los Angeles County Museum of Natural History; and Children’s Hospital of Los Angeles, where he served as Chairman of the Board from 1988 to 1992 and was instrumental in the founding of The Saban Research Institute.  In 2010 Children’s Hospital endowed The Richard Call Family Chair.  Dick also served on the boards of Scripps College, the Santa Anita Foundation, the Hoover Institution on the Stanford Campus, and the Trust Company of the West. 

In addition to his wife, Dick is survived by three daughters: Leslie Banning Call; Katharine Fleming Call; and Nancy Call McCullough; and five grandchildren. 


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