Department: Anthropology; 38 years at UW
Courses Taught: Literature and Society in Southeast Asia, Anthropological Study of Religion, Religion in Comparative Perspective
Achievements: Known to his friends and colleagues as "Biff," Keyes has taken great lengths to make sure his students- many of whom hail from Southeast Asia-feel comfortable in their new surroundings. The impact his guidance has had on the lives of his students extends far from the classroom, leading many to consider Keyes a friend as well as a mentor. He once helped a student obtain her Ph.D. just months before she died of cancer, then made the trip to Thailand with several of her closest friends, all of whom were students of his, to spread her ashes in her native country.
Quote: "Biff embodies not only what it means to be a dedicated adviser and scholar, but what it means to be a friend. Those of us lucky enough to know him … know that he is indeed one of the best things that ever happened to us. His deep commitment to his students and his field goes beyond professional integrity."
Degrees: B.A., Nebraska, 1959; Ph.D., Cornell, 1967