Anthony Rudolfos Tomazinis, PhD
Anthony (Tony) Rudolfos Tomazinis died on December 11, 2020, in Philadelphia. He was born in Larissa, Greece in 1929.
He lived through WWII and the Nazi Occupation of Greece, working for the Resistance though only a teenager. His father was shot by the Nazis on D-Day, in the square of the mountain village where they lived. Tony and his friends buried him themselves in the dead of night. He spent the rest of the war and years thereafter, taking care of his mother and sister. If not for his incredible fortitude, ingenuity, tenacity, resilience, and resourcefulness, he and his family would not have survived. As a young man, he served in the Greek Army in the Core of Engineers.
After finishing his B.C.E. in Civil Engineering at the National Technical University of Greece, Tony worked as an engineer in Athens, and then came to the U.S. in the mid-1950s to get a Master’s Degree in City Planning at Georgia Institute of Technology. Following that, he completed a Ph.D. in Urban Planning at the University of Pennsylvania, graduating in 1963 and eventually became a full professor.
Tony practiced extensively in the United States and abroad. He ran the University of Pennsylvania's Transportation Planning Studies Laboratory (TRANSLAB) for more than two decades. During the Carter administration, he was an advisor to the Office of Urban Affairs and a member of the Camp David Technical Mission on Energy to Egypt, immediately following the Camp David accords. He received a United Nations appointment to advise the Beijing Design Planning Institute on transportation planning. Tony was part of the design team of airports in both Athens and Lisbon, and transportation systems in Islamabad, Pakistan, and Skopje, Yugoslavia. He also advised the governments of Iran, India, and Taiwan on transportation and development issues, and was recognized as an international expert on transportation planning. Throughout his life, he was an active force in the Greek Community in Philadelphia.
Tony truly loved The University of Pennsylvania, where he taught in the graduate school and was for several years Chair of the Department of City and Regional Planning. He also loved his students, to whom he was a dedicated teacher and mentor.
In 1999, Tony received the University of Pennsylvania's G. Holmes Perkins Award for Distinguished Teaching. In 2008, the National Technical University of Greece presented him with a Lifetime Achievement Award. At the end of his life, he worked hard to establish a science city, Technopolis, in Thrace, Greece.
Although he remained Dr. Tomazinis to all who knew him, he was Tony and Dad at home. He was unfailingly kind, caring, generous, and honorable. He was incredibly charismatic and charming, a true old-world gentleman. He was funny, he couldn’t carry a tune if it had handles, and although very dignified, never took himself too seriously. He was a loving husband, father, brother, uncle, and friend who encouraged and supported his family and friends with all that he was. He is survived by his beloved wife, JoAnn, his children Christina (Jamie), Marina (David), and Alexis, and his grandchildren, Rebecca (29), Chloe (26), Aurelia (12), and Luc (10). He is also survived by dear family members in Greece, first-cousin Voula, nephew Thanasis (Evina), grand-nephew Niko, niece Dimitra, and grand-niece Fay.
The burial and service will be private.
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