Don A. Halperin, Ph.D

Don A. Halperin, FAIG, Director Emeritus, School of Building Construction, at the University of Florida, passed away on Monday April 15, 2019, in Gainesville, FL while under the care of Haven Hospice. He was born in Cleveland, Ohio to Moses P. and Sara Halperin.
Don earned his Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering from Case School of Applied Science. He earned a Master’s Degree in Architectural Engineering at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, a Master’s Degree in Architectural Engineering in 1958 from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and a Ph.D. in Engineering Sciences in 1964 from Virginia Polytechnic Institute. An avid supporter of education, he has provided for scholarships at all three of the colleges he attended: Case Western Reserve University, the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University. Because he attended the University of Illinois on a scholarship and later was a member of the University of Illinois Foundation’s President’s Council, Consular Circle, he established the Don A. Halperin Endowment Fund to support students enrolled in the architectural structures program in the School of Architecture. His fund will grant the Don A. Halperin Architectural Structures Award.
In 1983 he was elected a Fellow of the American Institute of Constructors, an honor only one percent of the members ever attain and at that time was only one of two educators so honored from the School of Building Construction at the University of Florida.
He served in the United States Army and was discharged in 1949.
Dr. Halperin received the “W.G. Thompson Employ the Handicapped” award from the Florida B’nai Brith. He was named consultant in architecture for the Florida Easter Seal Society.
An avid supporter of Gator Football, he attended home games as often as possible even when confined to a wheelchair.
Besides being a licensed Certified General Contractor, Don Halperin was the author of several books: The Ancient Synagogues of the Iberian Peninsula, Principles of Timber design for Architects and Builders, and Building with Steel. He also co-authored Construction Funding: The Process of Real Estate Development, Appraisal and Finance, and Principles of Timber Design for Architects & Builders. In addition, he illustrated and illuminated a Haggadah of Passover Manuscript, a traditional Haggadah with full English translation and beautiful illustrations for the text.
He was preceded in death by Elsa P. Halperin, his wife of 46 years, and by his parents. He is survived by two sons; Phil (Polina) Halperin of Netanya, Israel and Ken (Caryn Wexler) Halperin of Silver Spring, Maryland. In addition, he has 6 grandchildren and two great grandchildren, a brother David Halperin of Negev, Israel, and 2 nephews.
Funeral Services were held privately. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Congregation B’nai Israel 3830 NW 16th Blvd. Gainesville, FL 32605 /

Scroll to Top