Dr. Donald G. Coyne '54

Professor and Research Physicist

While attending the same high school where his father was vice principal, Donald G. Coyne won several art contests and was expected to major in art. However, since he was an amateur astronomer and showed talent in math, his high school physics teacher encouraged him to consider a career in engineering physics.

Coyne graduated from Hutchinson High School in 1954 and attended Kansas University where he received the Jolliffe, Summerfield and RCA Scholar awards. He graduated from KU in 1958 with a Bachelor of Science in Engineering Physics and was honored ast the top student in the Physics Department. After graduation, he attended the California Institute of Technology, receiving a Ph.D. in elementary particle physics in 1967. His work in physics continued at the University of California-Berkeley and Princeton. In 1985 he took a position as an adjunct professor at the University of California-Santa Cruz, and remained there until his retirement

Coyne's belief that black holes are doomed to evaporate into many elementary particles contributed to a new field of astronomy--particle astrophysics. With a group of other scientists, he operates a telescope located on the rim of an old volcano in New Mexico and observes the not-so-quiet sky and those active black holes.

He quietly persevered in attaining his career goals, while also taking friends, family, and other important parts of his life seriously. For these reasons, Dr. Donald G. Coyne deserves his special place on the Hutchinson High School Wall of Honor.