David N. Atkinson of Mission, Kansas passed away Wednesday, November 14, 2012, at the Kansas City Hospice House after a courageous battle with cancer. A Memorial service will be held at a later date. In lieu of flowers the family request memorials be given to The David N. Atkinson Scholarship at UMKC, which benefits undergraduate students majoring in Political Science.
He was born on February 12, 1940 in Mount Ayre, Iowa to his parents Cecil and Lena Atkinson. He graduated from the University of Iowa with a PhD and a Law Degree. He came to UMKC in 1967 as an assistant Professor and retired in 2011 as Curator's Distinguished Teaching Professor of Political Science. He also held a joint appointment in the UMKC School of Law. Over his 44 years he taught courses on Public Law, including Constitutional Law, Judicial Process and Jurisprudence. He received the Shelby Storck Award and the Alumni Reunion Fellowship Award for outstanding teaching. He was also honored for his teaching by the American Political Science Association with their teaching award for Outstanding teaching in Political Science. In addition to many articles in professional journals, he was the author of "Leaving The Bench: Supreme Court Justices at the End". This book was reviewed favorably in the Wall Street Journal along with many professional journals.
David was a member of the Bar of the Supreme Court of the United States and a member of the Bar of the State of Iowa.
He loved teaching and cherished the friendships he made with his students and colleagues through the years. He always had a thirst for knowledge and completed his life with dignity and courage.
David was preceded in death by his Father. He is survived by his Mother at 103, his sister Gail and husband Pat Murphy of Poplar Bluff, Missouri and sister Priscilla Atkinson of Overland Park, Kansas. Also by two nephews, Rob and Ryan Murphy and families.