Dr. Wayne H. Holtzman

  • Born: January 16, 1923
  • Died: January 23, 2019
  • Location: Austin, Texas

Weed-Corley-Fish Funeral Home North

3125 N Lamar Blvd.
Austin, TX 78705

Tel. (512) 452-8811

Tribute & Message From The Family

Dr. Wayne H. Holtzman, age 96, was born in Chicago on January 16, 1923, and passed away on January 23, 2019.

Although his family suffered during the Great Depression, he had what he considered to be an idyllic childhood learning about plants, butterflies and carpentry from his grandfather and playing with his younger sister, Eleanor and the many friends in his neighborhood. Starting when he was only five, his father took Wayne on short fishing trips to Wisconsin and Minnesota. Wayne loved the North Woods and eagerly looked forward to each trip. It was a great way to be close to his father.

In middle school, Wayne sold the weekly Saturday Evening Post door to door, making enough money to buy a bicycle. Later, while in high school, he worked twenty hours a week for a local cleaner and tailor shop, sewing cuffs and buttons on clothes, and delivering dry cleaning on his bicycle. Working hard, Wayne saved enough to pay for his first year at Northwestern University. Also, while in high school, Wayne joined the Sea Scouts where his many sea adventures convinced him he wanted to be a naval officer.

After receiving a BS degree in Chemistry from Northwestern University, Wayne was commissioned from the Naval ROTC as an ensign in February 1944. He served as an anti-aircraft gunnery officer on the USS Iowa in the Third and Fifth Pacific Fleets. Wayne was in Tokyo Bay and witnessed the Japanese surrender ending the Pacific conflict. His observation of the varied behaviors exhibited by men under stress during battles was a subject of great interest to Wayne and shaped his future career.

After discharge from active duty, Wayne returned to Northwestern University where he received his Master's degree and met Joan King, to whom he quickly became engaged. Wayne decided to pursue a PhD degree at Stanford University in Psychology. When Joan received a scholarship offer from Stanford for a Master's in music education, they got married in Aberdeen, South Dakota and headed for California.

In 1949, Wayne accepted a faculty position in the Psychology Department at The University of Texas. In 1961, Wayne made what would prove to be his most important contribution as a research psychologist when he published an inkblot perception and personality test that addressed some shortcomings in the Rorschach inkblot test. The Holtzman Inkblot Technique would go on to be widely recognized and still used by psychologists and psychiatrists in a variety of settings in the United States, Mexico and Europe.

During his 54-year career at The University of Texas, Wayne served as Professor of Psychology, Dean of the College of Education, and President of the Hogg Foundation for Mental Health. He received numerous honors and awards including the Centennial Award from the American Psychological Association for his distinguished contributions. He served as President of the International Union of Psychological Science travelling the world assisting with the development of psychology in China, Mexico and many other countries.

Wayne worshipped at University United Methodist Church and in addition to accompanying JoJo to Symphony board meetings and to her other activities, he enjoyed Town and Gown, Knights of the Symphony and other groups. Wayne spent most of his lunch breaks swimming at Barton Springs where he was a member of the Polar Bear Club. JoJo joined in with her Olympic style dog paddle and provided the customary peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. Above all else, Wayne was a loving husband to JoJo for 71 years and a wonderful father to his four sons. He loved his extended family and coordinated vacation trips to Mexico, Hawaii, Europe and every state in the nation. Wayne is survived by the love of his life, Joan, sons Wayne (Elsa), Jamie (Mickey), Scott (Denise) and Karl (Leslie) as well as 10 grandchildren and 10 great-grandchildren. Love you, Papa!

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to the Wayne H. Holtzman Regents Chair in Psychology at the University of Texas at Austin by visiting http://links.utexas.edu/ccxjaxq. Donations can also be mailed to the College of Liberal Arts Development Office, Attn: Stacy Clark, 116 Inner Campus Drive, G-6300, Austin, TX 78712. Contact Stacy Clark at (512) 471-8861 for more information. Donations may also be made to University United Methodist Church, 2409 Guadalupe, Austin, TX. 78705 www.uumc.org.

Memorial services will be held Saturday, February 2, 2019 at 11:00 a.m. Weed-Corley-Fish 3125 North Lamar Blvd. Austin, Texas.


Condolence & Memory Journal

Wayne was a towering figure in psychology on the UT campus and the world stage. He was all about building community and bringing psychologists together so that they could support one another's work. My first encounter with him was in the mid 1970's when he gathered psychologists from all over the UT campus (e.g., Departments of Psychology, Educational Psychology, Special Education, Sociology, and Human Ecology) and invited them for a boat cruise on Lake Austin. As you can imagine, this required a large boat. Wayne considered the investment well worth it. He continued to make investments in facilitating the work of his psychology colleagues during subsequent years while he was the President of the Hogg Foundation for Mental Health. Wayne's interest in building community extended to the world stage. He had extensive and long term relationships with psychologists in Mexico and hosted them in his home in Lakeway. He was also very active in the International Congress of Psychology. I remember being with him at an ICP conference in Beijing in 2004 and being impressed with how respectfully he was treated by a delegation of Chinese scientists who insisted on having him visit laboratories and meed other Chinese dignitaries. He and Jo Jo were always very welcoming and generous to me and my wife, Deborah Stote. Wayne's commitment to building community among psychologists will endure through the lives he touched and the endowments that he helped establish to support faculty and graduate students at the University of Texas.

Posted by Michael Domjan - Austin, TX - Coworker   February 13, 2019

Wayne was a wonderful man, scholar, and colleague to many of us. He assisted us greatly with funding efforts for The Austin Project in the late 90's through the Hogg Foundation. Wayne was kind and thoughtful when my late psychologist husband Clarke passed away almost 10 years age, who valued both him personally and professionally as a colleague in the UT psychology department.
We will miss him from our lives and treasure all that it did in the field of psychology and administration ,

Posted by Joan Burnham - Austin, TX - friend   February 02, 2019

Posted by Joan Burnham - Austin, TX   February 02, 2019

Posted by Joan Burnham - austin, TX   February 02, 2019

Wayne Holtzman was one of the most competent men I have ever known. He influenced the lives of many people in a positive way during his lifetime. He will be missed.

Posted by Jon Swartz - Austin, TX - Friend   February 02, 2019

Thank you Dr. Holtzman and the Hogg Foundation for your commitment to culturally competent workforce development for mental health treatment and research.

Posted by Susan Millea - Austin, TX   February 02, 2019

Dear Jamie and Holtzman Family,

Please accept my condolences on the passing of your father. As you know, for a short time many years ago, I served as a tax advisor to your dad. He was always friendly, thoughtful and appreciative. As I think of him now, it is with great admiration and fondness. He was a true gentleman and a scholarGod Bless.

Posted by August Petersen - AUSTIN, TX - Family Friend   February 02, 2019

So very grateful for our Papa! He leaves behind a family that is overwhelmingly grateful for his life, love and legacy.

Posted by Matt Holtzman - COLORADO SPRINGS, CO - Grandchild   January 31, 2019

So sad to hear about the passing of Dr. Holtzman. I have the utmost respect for him and the leadership he brought to the Foundation. Always a man of professional integrity and an inspiration to many. So glad I had the pleasure of working with him and getting to know you JoJo. My deepest sympathy to your family. Sending prayers and love,

Posted by Maria Bumpass - Austin, TX   January 31, 2019

Sarajane and I will always remember Wayne as a happy, caring person and one who was so dedicated to his family and the ASO. We keep his family in our thoughts.

Posted by Peter Bay - Austin, TX - Friend   January 30, 2019

I want to express my sympathy, hoping memories of your family gatherings will bring smiles to all as you share with each other. Peace be with you, Synthia Hutchens

Posted by Synthia Hutchens - Round Rock, TX - Family Friend   January 29, 2019

Dearest JoJo, Jamie and entire family,
Please accept our deepest sympathy in your loss. Wayne was a rare person, inspiration to so many, and fun to be around. He will be sorely missed by so many. Holly and Jonathan Decherd

Posted by Holly Decherd - GEORGETOWN, TX - Family Friend   January 29, 2019

So sorry to hear of Dr. Holtzman's passing. He accomplished so much in his lifetime. Prayers for the whole family.

Ray Brown

Posted by Ray brown - Colleyville, TX   January 28, 2019

I so much enjoyed working with Wayne as a board member for The Austin Project. I knew him as a man who held no prejudice, who listened intently to the opinion of others, who was encouraging, endearing, and, thoughtful. Cheers to a great man and prayers to his family for their loss.

Posted by John Miller - Austin, TX - Friend   January 28, 2019

Dr. Holtzman played a strong role in shaping the Hogg Foundation for Mental Health in his many years at the helm. His focus on rigor and learning from scholars across the globe shaped a broad perspective that in turn broadened Texas' view on improving mental wellbeing in communities across the state. His influence will live on for many years. My heartfelt sympathy to his family for this great loss.

Posted by Lynda Frost - Austin, TX - Coworker   January 27, 2019

There are no words that can truly capture the contributions which Wayne and Joan made to bi-national academic collaboration in Psychology between Mexico and the U.S. or to those leading to the development of Latina(o) Psychology.
Dr. Holtzman will always be in our thoughts and prayers.

Posted by Manuel and Susanne Ramirez - Austin, TX - Family Friend   January 26, 2019

Dr. Holtzman was a wonderful husband, father and friend!

I still remember the Halloween party his oldest son Wayne had when we were younger. Dr. Holtzman played the part of Frankenstein, taking great pride in his terrifying performance in the Holtzman Haunted House.

Joan accompanied him, playing spooky music on the piano and assuring us with her beautiful smile that all was well!

Posted by Charlotte Dalbey - Austin, TX - friend   January 25, 2019

Family Album