Born in Boston, I became interested in mathematics when I taught myself calculus at age 12.
As a student at Harvard, I studied finite group theory under the esteemed Saunders MacLane.
WWII interrupted my schooling, so I served as a Harvard instructor for army personnel...then later finished my Ph.D. thesis on algebraic geometry under Oscar Zariski.
I have taught mathematics at Clark University, Northeastern University, and Rutgers University...and am known for my dynamic lectures.
Though a type of ring is named after me, I switched my research to work on finite groups with I.N. Herstein...and even was invited to participate in "Group Theory Year" at the University of Chicago.
I eventually became one of the leaders in the 25-year effort by hundreds of mathematicians to classify all of the finite simple groups.
I have been fortunate to receive many awards: the Steele Prize, election to both the National Academy of Sciences and the American Academy of Arts and Science, and was named Director of DIMACS, a national science and technology center in discrete mathematics and theoretical computer science.
Daniel Gorenstein (1923 - 1992)