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Foundation relations director Morton Sosna dies

Morton Sosna

Morton "Mort" Sosna, director of foundation relations at Cornell, died June 30 in Ithaca, N.Y., of pancreatic cancer.

Sosna had been director of foundation relations at Cornell since 1992. He was involved with major university initiatives in the sciences, social sciences and humanities, and led Cornell's foundation efforts through the course of two capital campaigns. Sosna worked closely with most of the nation's leading independent foundations. During his tenure Cornell experienced an 85 percent increase in funding from private foundations.

Prior to joining Cornell, Sosna was associate director of the Humanities Center at Stanford University and a program officer at the National Endowment for the Humanities. He also taught in the history departments at the University of Missouri-Columbia and George Mason University, and in the American Studies Program at Stanford. Sosna is the author of "In Search of the Silent South: Southern Liberals and the Race Issue" and editor of "The Boundaries of Humanity: Humans, Animals, Machines."

A native of Chicago, Sosna received his bachelor's degree from the University of Illinois-Chicago (1967) and Ph.D. in American history (1973) at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

He is survived by his wife, Barbara, two daughters and four grandchildren.

A memorial service was held July 3 on campus. Donations in Sosna's memory can be made to the YMCA Invest in Youth Scholarship Campaign, Graham Road W., Ithaca, NY 14850, or to Hospicare, 172 E. King Road, Ithaca, NY 14850.

Inquiries about the Cornell Office of Corporate and Foundation Relations can be directed to Kristen Ford, director of new business development, 607-254-1679,

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Claudia Wheatley