Internationally recognized educator in analytical chemistry Douglas Arvid Skoog wrote three textbooks that led the field for several decades and multiple editions – the first persisting from its first edition in 1963 through its eighth in 2003. In addition to teaching and conducting research during his 1947–1976 Stanford tenure, he also helped to form the Santa Clara Valley chapter of the American Chemical Society, and became its first president in 1962.
Professor Skoog was born in Willmar, Minnesota in 1918, but spent much of his childhood in Portland, Oregon. He earned his bachelor’s degree in chemistry at Oregon State College (now University; BS 1940) and performed doctoral studies in analytical chemistry under D.T. Englis at the University of Illinois, Urbana–Champaign (PhD 1943). He took a position as research chemist with Standard Oil in Richmond, California from for four years before joining the Stanford faculty as assistant professor in 1947. He rose to associate professor in 1952 and full professor in 1962. He also served the Chemistry Department as associate executive head from 1961 until his retirement to emeritus status in 1976.