Lee Lorch – Citation for Honorary Life Membership in ISAAC

August 16, 2003



Lee Lorch is the author or coauthor of about 80 articles in mathematics published in the past 60 years. About a month from his 88th birthday, he is still publishing with articles to appear and submitted.


Professor Lorch has made contributions to several areas of interest to members of ISAAC including Real Analysis, Special Functions, Ordinary Differential Equations, Summability Theory, Approximation Theory, and Fourier Analysis.


His work has appeared in such leading journals as Acta Mathematica, Acta Mathematica Hungarica, American Journal of Mathematics, Canadian Journal of Mathematics, Communications on Pure and Applied Mathematics, Duke Mathematical Journal, Pacific Journal of Mathematics, Proceedings of the American Mathematical Society, and SIAM Journal on Mathematical Analysis.


Professor Lorch has contributed much to the study of the order of magnitude and asymptotic expansion of the Lebesgue constants for various expansions. Another theme, in which Lee and his coauthor Peter Szego can be said to have started a new field was in higher monotonicity properties (regular sign behaviour of higher derivatives and differences) of Sturm-Liouville functions. Some of the interesting conjectures from their first paper (1963) have not been settled yet. One of Professor Lorch’s strengths has been the ability to take an old method such as the Sturm comparison theorem and extract some valuable new information by its use.


Professor Lorch was honoured by Fellowship of the Royal Society in 1968. He has been active in the service of mathematics though the committees of the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council, the Canadian Mathematical Society and the American Mathematical Society. But perhaps he has stood out most prominently as a champion of the social responsibility of scientists in combating war and discrimination. He has constantly championed the rights of women and minorities to decent educational and career opportunities.


Professor Lorch made important contributions in developing contacts between western and eastern mathematicians. Not only did he visit the former Soviet Union several times in the sixties and seventies but also he organized visits of prominent Russian mathematicians to Canada; this was quite an achievement at that time. Professor Lorch actively supported mathematicians from developing countries. At the International Congress of Mathematicians in Warsaw in 1983, he organized a large meeting that discussed the problems of mathematicians from developing countries in great detail and gave an impulse to action.


Professor Lorch: The Society for Analysis, its Applications and Computation salutes you for your distinguished mathematical contributions, your valiant struggles on behalf of the disadvantaged, and your continuing efforts for world peace and understanding between peoples, and is delighted to ask you to accept an Honorary Life Membership in the Society.


V.I. Burenkov