Jean Delord's life spanned a remarkable depth and breadth - he fought Nazis in France, made major contributions in Tektronix' early days and become a beloved Reed College physics professor. He was born in France and earned an electrical engineering degree there in 1941, just as World War II started. He was imprisoned by the Nazis early in the war for publishing anti-Nazi literature, but escaped and joined the French resistance. He carved phony stamps to create authenticlooking travel documents allowing fellow citizens to escape to neutral Spain.
He came to University of Kansas after the war where he married a graduate student in English literature while earning a Doctorate in Physics at UK. He joined the physics faculty at Reed in 1950 and started working part time at Tektronix the following summer. Jean Delord, Joe Griffiths and Derrol Pennington, another Reed graduate, signed on to an effort initiated by Howard Vollum to bring a CRT design and manufacturing capability to Tektronix.
Howard Vollum made Jean Delord Tektronix' first director of research and development in 1954, a position he held until returning to Reed full time in 1964. At the start Dr. Delord was responsible for electron gun design and characterization and later would direct work in CRT design as well as research in solid state physics.
Dr. Delord was named the first A.A. Knowlton Chair in physics at Reed in 1981. Professor Knowlton was one of Howard Vollum's favorites, leading him to name one of streets on the Beaverton campus after him. Dr. Delord retired from Reed in 1988, 38 years after the graduation of his first class. Jean Delord endured Parkinson's in his later years but continued to thrive, attending a physics seminar at Reed two weeks before his death in 2002.
This February 5, 1955 issue of TekTalk features Jean Delord.
This October 24, 2002 Oregonian also summarizes his life.
The February 2003 Reed Magazine also has an article on the life of Jean Delord.