Karl Zaininger, one of the pioneers in the electronics revolution, died March 22, 2019, at age 89.
Born in Germany in 1929, he immigrated to the United States in 1951, married Sophia Hugel (a Ukrainian refugee he met in postwar Germany), and served in the Army during the Korean War. He then enrolled at the City College of New York and graduated in 1959 with a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering. In 1964, he earned a Ph.D. in electrical engineering from Princeton.
Zaininger became a research scientist at RCA’s David Sarnoff Laboratories in Princeton. In the mid-1970s, he helped establish the U.S. Solar Energy Research Institute in Colorado. Then he managed U.S. electronics programs at Fort Monmouth and the Pentagon.
In 1980, he returned to the private sector and became vice chairman and CEO of a Siemens Corp. subsidiary in Princeton. For decades, Zaininger lectured at Princeton, the Hebrew University in Jerusalem, and elsewhere. Later in life, he taught executive MBA sessions at schools and universities in Ukraine and Germany. Lastly, he helped establish entrepreneurial education programs at Princeton’s Keller Center. He received many professional and educational honors.
Zaininger is survived by his wife, Sophia; two children (including Lydia ’83); and five grandchildren. A son predeceased him.
Graduate alumni memorials are prepared by the APGA.