Bert Holland

In Memoriam

On April 27 2003, the Brock community joined with the family and friends of the late Professor Bert Holland, FRSC (UK), MCIC, Department of Chemistry, for a public memorial service, held in Pond Inlet.

Professor Holland passed away peacefully, surrounded by his family, on April 7 2003 after a courageous battle with cancer. The following are excerpts from an article about Professor Holland, written by Dr. Ian Brindle, Dean of the Faculty of Mathematics and Sciences, and submitted to the Canadian Chemical News and the Green Chemistry Journal in the UK:
“Bert was always a soft-spoken colleague, whose teaching was greatly appreciated by many generations of students. Bert was born in Bolton (UK) and attended Canon Slade School. Subsequently, he took a degree in Chemistry at Cambridge, followed by an MSc at Warwick University and a PhD at Queen’s University in Belfast, where he worked with the eminent Professor Henbest. He spent the years between 1972 and 197 6 at McMaster as a postdoctoral fellow and later as a teaching fellow, working with Professor Dave MacLean.

Bert was an eclectic researcher and wholeheartedly immersed himself in the new area of biotransformations, an area in which he made major contributions to the understanding and exploitation of microbial systems and enzymes for chemical transformations. He was the author of over 120 papers and communications, more than 30 reviews and book chapters, and two books on biotransformations. Bert’s interests in biotransformations led him naturally to the area of Green Chemistry where he made substantial contributions.

A colleague, Dr. Paul Anastas, from the White House Office of Science & Technology, writes: “Bert Holland brought perspective, thoughtfulness and creativity to all of his work and this was especially true of his work in green chemistry. While Bert will certainly be missed his contributions will long be appreciated and built upon.” Bert’s legacy of students, who can be found across the world, will be deeply saddened by his loss. Bert leaves his wife Frances, and sons Giles and Colin.”

Bert Holland