In Memoriam of prof. Stefan Jankowski

Stefan Jankowski
Prof. Stefan Jankowski
(1951 - 2015)

Professor Jankowski was born on 1951 in Włocławek, Poland. After primary education he attended Faculty of Chemistry at the Lodz University of Technology where he studied simultaneously Technology of Light Organic Synthesis at the Institute of Organic Chemistry under supervision of Professor W.J. Stec and Radiation Chemistry at the Institute of Applied Radiation Chemistry under supervision of Professor W. Reimschüssel. After graduation with honors, he has been appointed first as an assistant, and then senior assistant in the Institute of Applied Radiation Chemistry. His research was focused on application of radioisotopes for studies of reaction mechanisms, especially metabolism and isomerization of phosphoroorganic pesticides and syntheses of radionuclide (3H, 14C, 32P, 35S lub 59Fe) labeled compounds. This become later the main line of dissertation which he presented in 1988 to the Faculty of Chemistry in fulfillment of the Ph.D. degree in Chemistry. The post-doc position in Amherst, Massachusetts, USA under Professor L. Quinn was a milestone turning his interests again towards organic chemistry. After come back to Łódź Dr. Jankowski moved to Institute of Organic Chemistry acquiring the position of the head of NMR laboratory. Due to his efforts, in the short time the laboratory equipment was enhanced by a super-modern (then) Bruker Avance II Plus 700 MHz spectrometer. After habilitation in 1998 he was appointed as a deputy director of the Institute of Organic Chemistry, then as a director of the Institute and Vice-dean of the Faculty of Chemistry. In the meantime his scientific activity turned towards intermolecular phenomena in polymers, ionic liquids, dendrimers, and conformational relations in nucleic acids, however in the mainstream remained peptides. The application of spectroscopic methods for investigation of the structure of cyclic peptides, application of NMR for medical diagnostics based on profiling metabolites in human tissue and cerebrospinal fluid. The last new task was dedicated to the problems of authentication of products based on modification of their isotopic composition. Several of these tasks were undertaken in the fruitful collaboration with partners from academia as well as from industry. The progress obtained in this research area was remarkable and perceptible concerning that four of his coworkers received Ph.D. In 2012 he obtained the title of full professor and in the same year was elected the Dean of the Faculty of Chemistry. For his achievements he was awarded with Gold Medal for Long Service, Medal of National Education Committee, Merit for The University of Technology, awards from the Rector, and many others.

Professor Jankowski was unique mix of ultimate creativity, associative power, ability of deep thinking, and broad knowledge, combined with an enormous amount of energy, enthusiasm, and perfectionism. The perfectionist attitude, however, was modulated by his sense of humor what made him cheerful, considerate, animated, and kind person.

In private life he was deeply dedicated to his family as beloved husband, father and grandfather. He will remain in our memory as an excellent scientist, coworker, inspiring supervisor, very good colleague, and friend.

Contributed by Zbigniew Kamiński