Thomas E. Kropp ’69, who greatly loved the adventure of life and his adoring family, died on December 20, 2010 after a valiant battle against cancer. A native of Salem, Ore., Tom lived in the San Francisco Bay Area for most of his life. His first steps into the life and career he created in California began at Santa Clara University, where he earned his Bachelor of Science in Mathematics and was a charter member of the SCU chapter of Pi Mu Epsilon, the national mathematics honor society. More important, he met his future wife Gail Orr Kropp ’71. After graduation, Tom earned his Master of Arts in Applied Mathematics from UC Davis. Tom’s interest in the arts made San Francisco a perfect fit when he and Gail decided to settle centrally for their work. With his family, Tom took advantage of the cultural riches the area has to offer. Tom also loved the natural beauty of the Bay Area and the Sierras, relishing the moments of exploration and discovery in these settings with family and friends, whether hiking, cycling, or skiing. Tom’s regard for nature and the arts offered a healthy balance to a career that was intellectually demanding and significant. He had over thirty years experience in research and development, software development, network engineering, network security, project management and professional services. He spent over twenty years at Sterling Software. For nearly six years he worked as a manager in Critical Infrastructure Protection Programs (CIPP) at the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI). Tom then applied his expertise in the private sector as Director of CIPP at Nexant Technology in San Francisco. As a worker, Tom was thoughtful and quiet by nature. As a leader, he had a gift of being able to inspire confidence in everyone around him. Tom’s quiet leadership style was something made possible by his professionalism and his integrity combined with an uncommon sense of humility. Tom was also notable for his indomitable sense of optimism, always possessing a positive attitude. Right up to his last days, Tom continued his work with such dedication and dignity that many of his colleagues were unaware of the extent of the fight he was up against. These qualities served him well when he led several important initiatives aimed at improving the security of the United States electric grid. His accomplishments in this area included helping develop some of the cyber-security guidelines and federal regulations still in use today. While at EPRI and later at Nexant, Tom proudly served as the American delegate to CIGRE, the International Council on Large Electric Systems. One of the leading worldwide organizations on electric power systems, CIGRE covers technical, economic, environmental, organizational and regulatory matters related to energy. His work included IEC working groups, study committees and the drafting and presentation of technical papers. He thoroughly enjoyed the many colleagues he met from around the world through this important work. When Tom faced challenges in his life, he met them with courage and tenacity, turning most of these times into triumphs. Sadly, his final challenge with illness was not something he was able to overcome. But all who witnessed his courage and will to live were touched and changed by his strength and determination. During times when most would have sought respite and quiet, Tom continued to work in his profession to the very last days of his life. He had stellar and remarkable support from his friends, peers and colleagues at Nexant, something which he often said was a great blessing for him and his family. His beloved surviving family includes his wife Gail and their daughter, Julia; his brother John L. Kropp ’56 and the extended Kropp and Orr families. Tom was preceded in death by his parents, Henry and Lillian Kropp. In addition to the many friends and family who have provided significant support and expressed such great concern, the family wishes to thank Tom’s medical team that included Dr. G. Xon Ng of UCSF Internal Medicine and Tom’s Stanford Urological Oncology team. At the very end, the care and compassion they provided Tom will never be forgotten.

08 Nov 2018