Shirley Ann Newcomb


Professor Shirley Ann Newcomb passed away peacefully on Monday October 16, 2016 in Moscow Idaho. She was 93.

Shirley was born on June 30, 1923 in Cambridge, Nebraska to Leila Lodica Babcock Newcomb and Kenneth Ralph Newcomb.  Shirley grew up in Cambridge with her older sister Jennette in a very loving family.  She graduated from the University of Nebraska in dietetics and was recruited to teach home economics at the University of Idaho by Margaret Ritchie.  Shirley promised two years and taught for 40.

At the U of I Shirley was well loved by thousands of students whom she taught, mentored and mothered.  Professionally she is responsible for establishing the Consortium Coordinated Undergraduate Program in Dietetics which provided practicum placements in regional hospitals and allowed participants to take the exam to become Registered Dietitians.  She served on state and national boards and committees to further dietetics and participated in the first People to People Dietitians exchange with New Zealand and Australia. She served 3 years on the USDA National Advisory Board on Child Nutrition.  In her lifetime in Moscow, Shirley has been awarded two UI Alumni Awards for Faculty Excellence, The School of Home Economics Alumna Award, the June Yerrinton Idaho Dietetics Association Outstanding Dietitian, University of Nebraska Distinguished Alumna Award, the Idaho Treasure Award, The School of Family and Consumer Sciences Centennial Award and the UI College of Agricultural & Life Sciences Dean’s Achievement Award.  She is a charter member of the Margaret Ritchie Distinguished Speaker committee.  Shirley also contributed to many local boards and activities.

Shirley was preceded in death by her parents, her sister, her brother–in-law Warren Zwink, and her nephew Michael Zwink.  She is survived by niece Pamela Zwink Holliday and her husband Robert Johns and three great nephews, Scott Zwink and wife Paula of Seattle, Kevin Zwink and wife Brenda Lehman of Wichita and Kirk Zwink and partner Lisa Vella.

A Memorial service will be held at the University Inn – Best Western at 3p.m.on Saturday, October 22, 2016.

In lieu of flowers, memorial gifts could go to the Shirley Newcomb Dietetics Scholarship Endowment at the University of Idaho, Moscow, Idaho 83843

One Response to Shirley Ann Newcomb

  1. Mary Lou Koelsch says:

    Shirley was a most courageous and inspiring teacher. She fostered many of “Shirley’s Girls” through the field of dietetics.
    God give you eternal rest and peace!
    Mary Lou (Dahmen) Koelsch ’71

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