Craig, James M. (1916-1986)

Craig, James M. (1916-1986)

Date Updated




Academic Rank


Year Retired from SJSU


Educational Background

Oregon State University, 1960 Ph.D.

Stanford University, 1948 MS

San Jose State University, 1938 BS

Teaching Experience

San Jose State University, 1948 -1986

Administrative and Professional Experience

Chemical Engineer's License ‑‑ Chemist at Eng‑Skell Co. in San Francisco (1938­-1948).

Investigator of Clostridium Botulism in Fish for the National Institute of Health.

Grantee Public Health Institute, Hokkaido, Japan, 1970.

President, Western Society Naturalists, 1973.

President, Santa Clara Valley Orchid Society, 1979.

Received Distinguished Citizen Award of San Jose, 1980.

Member of AAS American Society Microbiology; Institute of Food Technology; Sigma Xi; Advisory Board of Salvation Army, 30 years; Santa Clara Youth Fishing; St. Francis Episcopal Church; Elks Club.

Personal Commentary

Personal Commentary by Vickie Taylor

A degree in Biology doesn't guarantee a job upon graduation. Everyone involved in the Biological Sciences is aware of this. A scientist enhances his career by drive and force of personality. Such a person was Dr. James Craig of the Microbiology Area of this Department. He had a fascinating career. He graduated from SJSU in 1938 with a double major in Chemistry and Biology.

While working in industry for 10 years as a licensed chemical engineer, he completed a Master's degree in Physiology and Biological Oceanography from Stanford.

In 1948, Dr. Craig returned to SJSU to begin his teaching career. During the summers he did his doctoral studies at Oregon State University. He completed his studies and published his work on Clostridum botulinum in 1963. Dr. Craig worked for 2 years as the principal investigator concerned with botulism for the FDA on the Pacific Coast.

In 1966 he journeyed to Russia to speak at the International Botulism Society and the International Microbiology Congress presenting two papers.

Summer of 1967 was spent in Alaska at the crab and salmon canneries.

In 1973, as President of Western Society of Naturalists, he toured Australia and New Zealand and attended the International Coral Reef Symposium.

Each summer Dr. Craig's studies took him to some fascinating place. Usually to teach and learn, sometimes just for fun. His travels include Japan, Costa Rica, Australia, Africa, England, Nepal, Turkey, India, Yugoslavia, and most of Western Europe.

Dr. Craig had many interests including fishing, orchid growing, woodworking, photography, skin diving, and piloting.

An accomplished individual, interesting to talk to, Dr. Craig welcomed all visitors to his office on the second floor, DH 239.

Because of Dr. Craig's strong ties to Oregon State University, his wife and sons established the James M. Craig Memorial Lectureship. Each year a speaker is chosen whose research focuses on applied microbiology in areas similar to those pursued by Dr. Craig.

Date Completed: 7/96

Adapted from: Biographies of Retired Faculty San Jose State University 1997: A Project of the Emeritus Faculty Association of San Jose State University. San Jose, CA: The University, 1997.


Craig, James M. (1916-1986)