George Robert Toney ’41 died at his home in Washington, D.C., on January 17, 2008, of lung cancer.
Born on June 26, 1918, in West Barrington, R.I., he prepared for college at Needham (Mass.) High School. Following his graduation, he served in the U.S.Army from 1942 to 1946. He was a high school teacher in Gloucester, Mass., from 1946 to 1951 before becoming an executive officer for the Arctic Weather Station of the U.S. Weather Service in Washington, D.C. In 1956-57, he was an administrator of the Antarctic program of the National Academy of Sciences International Geophysical Year, and he served as Antarctic station scientific leader and programs officer in 1957-58. Mount Toney in Marie Byrd Land in Antarctica is named in his honor. He was the program director of the Office of Antarctic Programs at the National Science Foundation from 1958 to 1963 and executive director of NSF’s Office of Polar Programs from 1963 to 1967. He worked in the division of Environmental Sciences at the National Science Foundation (NSF) from 1967 to 1970 and, from 1970 to 1972, was the special assistant to the deputy director of National and International Programs at NSF. After 25 years with the federal government, Mr. Toney retired and entered the first class of the Antioch School of Law, from which he received a J.D. degree in 1975. He subsequently spent 25 years working with the juvenile justice system of the Superior Court of the District of Columbia before retiring again. He was a trustee and long-time member of the River Road Unitarian Church in Bethesda, Md. He was the treasurer of the Action Coordinating Committee to End Segregation of the Suburbs (ACCESS) from 1967 to 1969 and was a former director and president of the Antarctican Society. He is survived by his wife, Sara Dowty Toney, whom he married in 1941, and his son, Stephen Toney.