Judith S. Rowe in memoriam

By Bobray Bordelon | May 6, 2022

It is with great sadness that I report the death of Judith S. Rowe at the age of 91 on May 5, 2022. She was a founding member of IASSIST in 1974 and its president from 1985-1988. She received the IASSIST achievement award in 2000.

Close up portrait of Judith S. Rowe
She was the founder of Data and Statistical Services at Princeton University in 1964 and headed the service until her retirement in 1998. She received many other awards during her career including the 1997 William H. Flanigan Award for Distinguished Service as an ICPSR Official Representative and in 1990 the American Library Association’s GODORT James Bennett Childs Award. She was the first non-faculty Official Representative elected to the ICPSR Council (served 1980-1984).

Judith was a prolific author. She was constantly lobbying for improved government statistical reporting and was considered a foremost expert on the USA census. She was a pioneer in the creation of the Census Bureaus' State Data Center program in 1979. She also had elected positions in the Association of Public Data Users (1980-1982) and the Council of Professional Associations on Federal Statistics (1982-1983). She was one of the great pioneers of the social science data field.

In 1999, Judith reflected her life in data in “The Decades of My Life” (doi.org/10.29173/iq575). Judith’s beloved husband Peter preceded her in death, but she is survived by 3 children and grandchildren. Judith was a mentor to me and so many others internationally. She led a remarkable life, and we owe much of the foundations of our profession to her.