EDITORIAL - A Tribute to Frank Columbus (1941-2010)
Authors: Joav Merrick
Abstract: Frank H Columbus, Jr was born on February 26th 1941 in Pennsylvania. He joined the army upon graduation of high school and went on to complete his education at the University of Maryland and George Washington University. In 1969, he became the Vice-President of Cambridge Scientific and in 1975 he was invited to work for Plenum Publishing, where he was the Vice-President until 1985, when he founded Nova Science Publishers.
Nova Science Publishers is a scholarly publishing house of high-quality books (about 1,500 new academic titles every year) and peer-reviewed journals (more than 100 academic journals) in the following areas of interest.
Mathematics and Statistics
Media and Communications
Business and Finance
Health and medicine
Chemistry including Chemical Engineering
Children and Families
Music and other Fine Arts
Computer Science and Robotics
Country and Regional Studies
Economics, Trade, and Globalization
Language and Literature
Law, Crime, and Law Enforcement
Authors are located in every country of the world with many joining Nova each year as members of Editorial Boards or as reviewers, authors, editors and contributors. Nova's subject profile is wide-ranging, encompassing the medical sciences, physical sciences and social sciences. The publications of Nova are distributed in every country of the world and listed on all leading internet bookseller sites.
Both the various journals and book series are peer-reviewed by high-esteemed international professionals or editors from a multidisciplinary and international background in order to serve the academic community worldwide.
Nova Science Publishers is located in Hauppauge, a hamlet in the Town of Islip and the Town of Smithtown in Suffolk County, New York, United States. The area around the headwaters of the Nissequogue River was dubbed Hauppauge by the Indians; it means ``overflowed land'' in the Algonquian language. With the arrival of the Europeans, ownership of the area was divided between the Towns of Smithtown and Islip. On the Smithtown side, the land was owned by founding father Richard Bull Smith (Smythe) (1613-1691) and then handed down to other family members. But the first settler was Thomas Wheeler (1710-1783), who built a small house at the intersection of Hauppauge (Route 111) and Townline Roads before 1740. The area became known by the Revolution as the Wheelers. That name stuck until 1843, when it reverted to Hauppauge. The earliest development was near Wheeler's farm. He was followed by other settlers with still prominent local names such as Blydenburgh. These settlers farmed the land and cut trees for cordwood.
In 1907 Joseph Blydenburgh's home at Hauppauge and Townline Roads was purchased by the Brooklyn Industrial School Association, which sent 257 children to spend their summers there. Renamed Locustdale, the facility operated for 47 years. Other farms gave way to county and state office buildings and commercial structures. Though Riverhead remains the Suffolk county seat, Hauppauge, because of its location, has been the practical center of county government since the 1960s.
The modern Hauppauge Industrial Park, where Nova Science today is placed, located at the edge of the hamlet, is the largest on Long Island and by some accounts the second largest in the United States. The park has over 1,350 companies, and it employs over 55,000 Long Islanders. The companies in the industrial park provide the tax revenue that makes up the bulk of the Hauppauge school district's budget.
I have had the pleasue to know Frank since 2007, when I first came to Hauppauge to visit him and Nova Science Publishers. For some years I had received many standard emails with requests to contribute papers or chapters to books in the field of child health, disability and human development, which are my fields of interest. I wanted to meet Frank and see what Nova was all about and found a very intelligent and broadminded person that I was able to talk to and discuss some of my ideas and dreams. Over time this friendship and relationship has resulted in my appointment as the editor-in-chief of five international journals at Nova and two book series with now more than 50 books already published together.
Every year since 2007 I have spend time in Hauppauge with Frank and his family to discuss collaborations. My last visit was on November 15th, 2010, where he was in good spirit after moving into a new house and we discussed some more projects and ideas together, besides our usual conversations about the world situation.
Frank passed away at his home in New York (Dix Hills) on December 1st, 2010, just two weeks after my last visit and conversation with him. He was a unique person who enjoyed studying throughout the course of his life, who felt at home in his own country, which he loved and was very proud of, but also a great love for Russia and Georgia, where he spend several months every year together with his wife Nadya. He will be remembered for his talent, professionalism, brilliant ideas and above all for his good heart and open mind. The family and Nova Science Publisher has lost a wonderful person and I have lost a good friend, who will be sorely missed by all of us.
I want this issue of the International Journal of Child Health and Human Development to be a tribute to the work and life of Frank Columbus and my hope is that we together with his wife Nadya and his children Maya and Alexandra will continue the work of Frank and strenghten the ideas and dreams that he had for academic publications.