Deceased December 13, 2020

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In Memory

Tom Pick was a wonderful person who gave to Amherst College the Pick Readership in Environmental Studies. I was the Pick Reader from 2003 to 2006. During that time, I exchanged a number of letters with Tom about the environmental courses I was introducing to the curriculum—on fisheries, sustainable agriculture, invasive species and habitat destruction—and the students’ positive responses to them. I last saw Tom in 2014, when John MacLennan ’66 invited me to speak about my hummingbird research to the Sanibel-Captiva Audubon Society. John also arranged for me to speak to the Sun Coast Chapter of Amherst alumni, and Tom joined us. I spent a wonderful day being driven around southwest Florida while Tom entertained us with his stories. I’ll cherish the experience forever.

Tom was the catalyst for the development of an environmental studies major at Amherst College. It is now the 10th largest major at the College and, in 2019, graduated more seniors than any of the science majors. Our graduates have gone on to careers in environmental policy, and quite a few of them have become professional environmental writers. All of this was made possible by Tom’s generosity. We in environmental studies will remember him well.

Ethan J. Temeles, Thomas B. Walton Jr. Memorial Professor of Biology and Environmental Studies