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In memoriam: Christine Groppe

Christine Groppe
Christine Groppe, UC Cooperative Extension nutrition specialist emeritus, died July 16, 2017, in Santa Barbara. She was 105.

Groppe, who grew up in Lincoln, Neb., earned a B.S. in nutrition science at the University of Nebraska and an M.S. in nutrition from Michigan State University.

She began her career as a nutrition specialist with the U.S. Agricultural Service in Ohio. In 1946, Groppe joined UC Cooperative Extension as a nutrition home advisor for Alameda County. After serving as an advisor for 12 years, Groppe became a UCCE nutrition specialist at UC Berkeley.

“Christine was the Cooperative Extension nutrition specialist on the UC Berkeley campus when I was hired in the early 1970s,” said Joanne Ikeda, UCCE nutrition specialist emeritus at UC Berkeley. “She was very popular with county advisors and had an excellent reputation. She was my mentor and an amazing person.”

Ikeda added, “She was the most generous person I have ever known. She gave so much money to charity that the IRS investigated her – and found it was true! She gave over half of her salary to charities both before and after retirement. She wore clothes that her sister sent to her. ‘They are like new!' she would exclaim.”

Christine Groppe, third from left, at a NFCS advisors reunion in 2006.
After retiring from UC, Groppe redirected her skills to instructing Peace Corps volunteers and teaching in Korea and Bolivia. In 1975, she moved to Santa Barbara, becoming active in the local Covenant Church and other community organizations.

She is survived by her daughter, Lynn Hardaway (Gary) and grandchildren Robin Hardaway, Brent Hardaway, Scott (Noel) Hardaway, and Michael (Denise) Brumley.

Read more in The Santa Barbara News-Press online edition at

Posted on Wednesday, August 23, 2017 at 11:19 AM

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