American Univesity of Beirut

Lutfi Diab


Lutfi Najib Diab, PhD (BA'51) was born in Jdeidet Marjeyoun and passed away in Beirut on September 29 at the age of 88. He served AUB with high distinction for over 40 years and helped shepherd the University through turbulent times as dean of the Faculty of Arts and Sciences and as acting president. Dr. Diab graduated from AUB with a BA in psychology and received his PhD from the University of Oklahoma. He returned to AUB in 1957 to serve as an instructor in psychology and soon moved up the ranks to assistant associate, and full professor, first in the Department of Psychology and later the Department of Socila and Behavioral Sciences. He became assistant dean in 1968 and, one year later, associate dean of the faculty of Arts and Sciences under Dean Edwin Terry Prothro, who was his colleague in psychology and with whom he co-authored the book, Changing Family Patterns in the Arab East, in 1974. In 1985, at the height of the Civil War, Dr. Diab became dean of the Faculty of Arts and Sciences and remained in this post for 12 years, serving under four AUB Presidents. This was at a time when AUB presidents worked from the New York Office, leaving the daily running of affairs to the deans and acting presidents in Beirut. During this period, Dr. Diab also served as acting president of the University (1986-87), first under Calvin Plimpton and then under Frederic P. Herter. After serving as acting president, he remained until his dean until 1997 and as a professor until his retirement in 1999. Dr. Dian is survived by his wife Salwa Makdah (BA'68, MA'70) and five children- all graduates of AUB: Rula (BA'92, MA'96), Najib (BBA'93, MA'95), Samar (BA'95, MA'99), Dima (BS'98, MD'02) AND Dalia (BA'01). President Fadlo R. Khuri commented, “His steadfast determination to maintain the integrity and high ideals of the University and its Medical Center against enormous odds remains an inspiration to us all. The entire AUB community owes Dr. Lutfi Diab a debt of gratitude for his exemplary service and dedication. We have lost a pillar of the University."

Publications with AUB Press:

  • Changing Family Patterns in the Arab East​

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