John Christiano left NIU in 1982, but he is certainly not forgotten. The 93-year-old and long-time mathematics professor lives in Jupiter, Florida with his wife Margaret, also a former faculty member. "NIU is home to me", says John, "It is where I matured professionally and personally." That strong feeling for NIU prompted him and his wife to remember the university through a trust in their estate and a charitable gift annuity that will provide student scholarships.
John came to NIU to teach math in 1959. He played a huge role in building the program until his retirement almost 30 years ago. Margaret too, takes pride in having helped develop a graduate program for nursing students who couldn't attend school full-time.
Though miles away now, the Christianos try to stay connected to the university and their NIU friends. Just recently, during the 50 year anniversary celebration of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences (LA&S), John's name came up several times among former students. Arnold E. Hampel, B.S. '63 who was honored by LA&S remembered Christiano as someone who had a big impact on his career both at NIU and professionally. That's quite a compliment from a man who is internationally recognized for his scientific and scholarly achievements.
So while the Christianos continue to enjoy their retirement, it's refreshing to think back to their time in DeKalb when they played important roles in educating students who are now giving back in their own chosen careers. That feeling can't help but make life that much sweeter.
Note: The Christianos have 3 children, 5 granchildren and a great-grandchild on the way.
Northern Illinois University has designated the NIU Foundation as the charitable organization to receive and manage all gifts on its behalf.
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