Saturday, 4 December 2010

Marshall Leach

I find obituaries fascinating. There are so many interesting people that we never meet. I think it's only fair that I contribute. In this case, I never met the man. Marshall Leach died at age 70 as a full professor at Ga. Tech. He was certainly not retired and had a full teaching schedule. What's notable about Leach is that from all appearances, he was an idiosyncratic type with a great sense of humor. But what I know of him is his academic legacy. My last paper on SPICE modeling of headphones is a direct descendant of his paper on SPICE modeling in Electroacoustics. It was his paper that led me into all of Olson's papers on electroacoustic modeling and simulation. Unlike many, he published sporadically but his papers were always interesting to read. His paper on low noise electronics in Proc. of the IEEE is a clear exposition of the problems and solutions to low noise design. He received four teaching awards from the students. Clearly, he was perfect in his roles as teaching and advisor. His legacy comprises the papers he published and the many students he taught. And that's a life well lived.

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