cropped-ken-devlin.jpg

Education

UBC, 1946, BSc, Agriculture
Oregon State College, 1949, MSc, Food Science
Washington State College, 1953, PhD, Food Science

About

Doug, the oldest brother, Lloyd, then Larry and Ken, the youngest, were all born between 1918 and 1923 in Assiniboia, Saskatchewan, a small town of 2,000 people, located 80 miles south of Moose Jaw. Their parents Mark and Ruth raised them through those awful “Dirty Thirties” when dust was plenty and money was scarce. How did they do it? A backyard vegetable garden, if you could call it such, a cow borrowed from a good farmer friend, and a few chickens. Boy, when that big red cow shook her stake chain, it rattled the teeth of any brother on the other end!

Near the end of the thirties, Mark drove four young men to Trail, BC, where they were able to find work. Ruth followed soon after with the four boys and their baby sister Delores.

Doug had just finished high school in Assiniboia, and he soon started his apprenticeship at the Consolidated Mining and Smelting plant in the plumbing and steam fitting shop. Lloyd and Larry finished high school in Trail, and thereafter Lloyd apprenticed as a painter and sign writer, while Larry apprenticed as a leadburner, with the C M & S, of course.

Then came World War II, and the older brothers served their hitch – Doug in the air force, Lloyd and Larry in the army. Ken finished high school in Trail and entered UBC. Once the war ended and with the help of the Veterans’ Assistance Program, the three older brothers enrolled as freshmen in the Department of Food and Dairy Science where they joined Ken, now a senior in his last year in that department. “Hah, vengeance is mine, thought the lofty senior students.” Can you just imagine a bunch of wet-behind-the-ears seniors trying to “haze” those hard-bitten returning veterans?

Ken graduated in the spring of ’46, majoring in Dairy Bacteriology. He spent a year in antibiotic research with a pharmaceutical firm (Ayerst) in Montreal, then secured a Research Station Fellowship at Oregon State College, graduating in the spring of ’49 with an MSc degree in Food Science. This was followed after a year in the frozen food industry by a PhD degree from Washington State College in the spring of 1953, again majoring in Food Science. Here he was fortunate to gain an Experiment Station Fellowship and worked under Dr Charles R Stumbo, well known for his work in Thermal Process Calculation and Evaluation. The next several years were spent in the canning, brewing and dairy industries; then six years as Chairman of the Technology Division at Canadore College in North Bay, Ontario. While at the college in 1972, Ken was asked by the Canadian Government to put on a short course in food science at the University of Kasetsart in Bangkok, Thailand. His final eleven working years were spent with the Health Protection Branch, Food Directorate, Department of National Health and Welfare, in Ottawa. Ken made two trips to Rome to meetings of the Food and Agriculture Organization to discuss proposed international standards for various food regulations. Ken has two sons and a daughter. He and his wife Eleanor retired to Creston, BC, in 1985. They enjoy golfing and some travelling. Ken retained his membership in Sigma Tau Upsilon, the Honorary Agriculture Fraternity, until its dissolution in 2004.

“Not bad eh, for four depression kids from Saskatchewan who to this day hate macaroni in any shape or form!”

“TIME, YOU OLD GYPSY MAN, WILL YOU NOT STAY, PUT UP YOUR CARAVAN JUST FOR ONE DAY?” R. Hodgson

R Blair 2001

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