Brown IV, Dr. Ben

 

Brown IV, Benjamin F. Dr. Benjamin F. Brown IV, age 81, died peacefully on November 28. 2011at his home in Chevy Chase MD. He is survived by his wife Clara Lovett Brown of Chevy Chase and Phoenix, Arizona, and his brother and sister-in-law, J. Crozier Brown and Rita Brown of Dallas, Texas. Dr. Brown was born in Temple, Texas, on June 24, 1930, the son of Benjamin F. Brown III and Mary Hunt Brown. He grew up in Waco, Texas, where he attended high school and graduated from Baylor University with a BA in English. He continued his studies at the University of Colorado, Boulder, earning a master’s degree in Latin American Studies. While working for Bank of America in San Francisco, he enrolled in graduate history courses at the University of California, Berkeley and then transferred to¬†Harvard University, where he earned a Ph.D. in Modern European History. He studied in Italy on a Fulbright scholarship and wrote his dissertation on Sidney Sonnino, Italy’s Foreign Minister during World War II. Continuing this work in the 1960s, while teaching at Sonoma State University in California and later at the University of Kansas, Dr. Brown made a landmark archival discovery: Sidney Sonnino’s public papers. The statesman’s heirs thought these papers had been destroyed. This discovery and subsequent publication of selected documents established Dr. Brown as an authority on the history of modern Italy. The American Historical Association awarded him the Howard Marraro Prize and the Guggenheim Foundation awarded him a research fellowship. Following the Guggenheim fellow-ship year, Dr. Brown moved to Washington D.C., joining the Directorate of Intelligence, Central Intelligence Agency, first as scholar-in-residence and then as senior political analyst. He retired from this second career when his wife, Clara Lovett, the former provost of George Mason University, accepted the presidency of Northern Arizona University. An avid traveler throughout his life, Dr. Brown believed that a college education should include opportunities for young people to study and work abroad. For this reason, he personally funded travel scholarship programs at the University of Colorado, Boulder, and at Thunderbird, The Graduate School of Global Management, Glendale, Arizona. During his years in Flagstaff, Arizona, Dr. Brown played a key role in opening a High Altitude Sports Training Center on the campus of Northern Arizona University, led a major fundraising campaign on behalf of United Way of Northern Arizona, and joined with other community leaders in establishing the Flagstaff Comm-unity Foundation. Moving to Phoenix after his wife’s retirement from the presidency, Dr. Brown remained active in civic and philanthropic endeavors, especially in support of the arts. He served as chairman of the board of a family foundation, the B&L Charitable Foundation, and as a trustee of the Phoenix Symphony Orchestra and Actors Theatre of Phoenix, Arizona. Memorial services for Dr. Brown will be held on January 7, 2012 at 2 PM at St. John’s Norwood Episcopal Church in Chevy Chase MD and on January 14, 2012 at 11 AM at Trinity Episcopal Cathedral in Phoenix, AZ.

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