Richard Blair '42
Scientist and donor
After graduating from Redlands, Richard "Dick" Blair received graduate degrees from MIT and Boston University. He then worked for Hughes aircraft as a senior scientist in the electrochemistry group, Materials Technology Department of the Research and Development Division at the Culver City plant.
While at Hughes, he was one of six men honored by NASA for “significant technical contributions” to its programs. He was honored for his development of an inorganic thermal control pigment paint that provided a passive thermal coating for the Surveyor lunar soft landing vehicles which absorbed and emitted heat in the Surveyor framework, eventually balancing the external and internal heat and cooling system.
In addition to his honor from NASA, he held 14 patents.
In 1984, Dick and his sister, Caroline Blair Kurhajec ’40 established the George C. Blair Endowed Scholarship in honor of their father, who was a member of the first graduating class at Redlands and former city of San Bernardino mayor. The senior Blair was always interested in young people and the University and believed that education was the key to advancement.
Richard Blair passed away on Aug. 11, 2011.