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John “Jack” Wise

The Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution announces with great sorrow the death of former Trustee John “Jack” Wise on Sunday, June 13 in Princeton, NJ. The cause was complications from Parkinson’s Disease.

Jack was the retired Vice President-Research at Mobil Research and Development Corporation for 44 years

Jack was born in Cambridge, Massachusetts on February 28, 1932. He graduated from Tufts University with a BS in Chemical Engineering and from MIT with a PhD in Chemistry. He worked at the forefront of commercialization of new technology for all facets of the petroleum industry ranging from how to find oil in the ground to making finished fuels and lubricants. He was responsible for the development and commercialization in New Zealand of technology for the conversion of natural gas into gasoline, a major advance of synthetic fuel technology. He also developed new technology now widely used for the production of the chemical intermediates for manufacturing polyester and styrene.

Jack co-chaired a study between the auto and oil industries that developed information in a massive multi-year research study on how to minimize air pollution by reformulating gasoline and diesel fuel. This data was used by the EPA to set fuel standards used to implement the Clean Air Act.

Jack was also recognized for his work as a member of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. He received the Gold Medal from the Industrial Research Institute for excellence in research management. He was elected to the National Academy of Engineering.

Jack married the late Rosemary Seary Bishop in 1967. They lived in Pennsylvania, Connecticut, Texas, and then Princeton, NJ. He is survived by his two daughters Susannah Scovil Wise and Jean Porter Wise and one grandson, Alexander Wise Philbrick.

In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to LIFE Inc, 550 Lincoln Road Extension, Hyannis, MA 02601. Arrangements are under the direction of The Mather-Hodge Funeral Home, 40 Vandeventer Avenue, Princeton, NJ  08542.  

Information for this obituary is from the Mather-Hodge Funeral Home.