Norman Albert LeBel ’52 died on December 21, 2003, in Southfield, Michigan.
Born on March 22, 1931, in Augusta, he prepared for college at Cony High School and Brunswick High School and became a member of Kappa Sigma Fraternity at Bowdoin. Following his graduation cum laude in 1952, he was for two years a research chemist with the Merck Company in New Jersey. Beginning in 1954, he did graduate work in organic chemistry at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, from which he received his doctor of philosophy degree in 1957. He joined the faculty at Wayne State University in Detroit, MI, where he taught organic chemistry until his retirement. In 1981, he was the recipient of one of the four Excellence in Teaching Awards at Wayne State, and in 1991 was the recipient of Bowdoin’s Distinguished Educator Award, the citation for which said, “A pioneer in stereochemistry research and Professor of Chemistry at Wayne State University, you have been highly recognized by your colleagues for your research and teaching abilities. Through your work you have excelled in the field of chemistry, applying your expertise not only in the classroom but also through leadership roles with the American Chemical Society, the Petroleum Research Fund Advisory Board, the Advisory Board for The Journal of Organic Chemistry, and the U.S. Army Research Panel.” In 1996, he was the recipient of the Paul G. Gassman Distinguished Service Award presented by the American Chemical Society’s Division of Organic Chemistry. From 1984 to 1986, he was the interim dean of Wayne State’s College of Liberal Arts Division of Organic Chemistry. Surviving are his wife, Constance Ouellette LeBel, whom he married in 1952; a daughter, Norma L. Fowler; two sisters, Constance Michaud and Jeannette Sproul; and three grandchildren.