Ann Harris Yasuhara
Ann Harris Yasuhara, 82, died at her home on June 11, 2014, in Princeton, New Jersey. She was a professor emeritus in the Department of Computer Science at Rutgers University–New Brunswick.
Born on March 8, 1932, in Madison, Wisconsin, her parents were Julian Earle Harris (a noted French language educator at the University of Wisconsin) and Elizabeth Marshall Harris, a sculptor. She studied cooking and fashion design in Paris, attended Swarthmore College, and earned her bachelor's, master's, and doctoral degrees in mathematics from the University of Illinois. In 1970 she and her husband, Mitsuru, settled in Princeton.
In 1972 she joined the new department of computer science at Rutgers University, where she was an associate professor. She supervised the Ph.D. theses of Frank Hawrusik, Venkataraman Natarajan, and Elaine Weyuker.
Ann belonged to the living tradition of Quaker spirit-led peace and justice activists. Unflagging in her resistance to war and violence, she studied the philosophy and methods of nonviolent resolution of conflict with George Lakey, the noted Quaker peace activist. In turn, she led training groups for inner-city children.
Within the Society of Friends (Quakers), she served terms at Princeton Friends Meeting as clerk of the meeting and clerk of the committee on peace and social concerns. She also served on committees in Philadelphia Yearly Meeting, an association of 103 Quaker meetings.
Most recently she enthusiastically supported—and went on protests with—the nonviolent direct action group, Earth Quaker Action Team (EQAT), which works to end mountaintop removal coal mining. On her 79th birthday she protested on a strenuous mountain climb in West Virginia mining country. In January, just before she was diagnosed with cancer, the Philadelphia-based group honored her as one of its outstanding “wise elders.”
A memorial service is held on July 5 at 2 p.m. at Princeton Friends Meeting. Donations in her memory may be made to any of the many charities she supported and/or to Princeton Friends Meeting, 470 Quaker Road, Princeton, N.J. 08540.
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