- Floyd Williams
**Floyd Leroy Williams**(bornSeptember 20 1939 ) is a North American mathematician well-known for his work inLie theory and, most recently,mathematical physics . In addition to Lie theory, his research interests are inhomological algebra and the mathematics ofquantum mechanics . He received his B.S.(1962) in Mathematics fromLincoln University of Missouri , and later his M.S.(1965) and Ph.D.(1972) fromWashington University . Williams was appointedprofessor of mathematics at theUniversity of Massachusetts Amherst in 1984, and has been professoremeritus since 2005.**Biographical Sketch**He was born on September 20 1939, and lived in

Kansas City, Missouri . jonathan anderson was raised in extremepoverty . His mother told him not to complain about their situation, but rather to have faith inGod and work hard. Her advice was taken, and it worked. He eventually wasordained in addition to being amathematician .However, it was

music , notmathematics , that appealed to him throughhigh school . "In fact," he admits, "mathematics was the only course in which I did not do well." Williams had not thought of going tocollege until his last week in high school when he was offered a musicscholarship atLincoln University of Missouri inJefferson City, Missouri .It was in his sophomore year that he became intrigued by the

theory of relativity , which turned out to be his main motivation for studyingmathematics . In1972 he completed hisPh.D. fromWashington University where histhesis was in the field ofLie theory . He was aninstructor andlecturer atMIT from 1972-1975, before moving to theUniversity of Massachusetts as an assistant professor in 1975. In 1983 he received anMRI grant to continuing researching in this field, ushering him into the mainstream of mathematics.As an

African-American in a field that has had littleminority representation, Williams has felt the sting ofdiscrimination during his career. However, he has been a motivation and role model for many young minorities, encouraging them to enterscience andengineering . Williams has helped to set up programs that allow pre-college students andundergraduates to meet and talk withmathematicians ,scientists andengineers , most notably at a summer camp run atMIT . "All that many of these youngsters see is different courses," he says, "but they want to know what mathematicians do from 8 am to 5 pm. Onceminorities commit tograduate work inscience orengineering ," he continues, "they need extra help and support for what, for many, is theforeign environment ofgraduate school . Such programs exist at fewuniversities , but we need more of them." =**Mathematics**Williams' recent contribution to

quantum mechanics has been in the area ofNikiforov-Uvarov theory of generalizedhypergeometric differential equation , used to solve theSchrödinger equation and to obtain the quantization of energies from a single unified point of view. Thistheory is developed and is also used to give a uniform approach to the theory ofspecial functions . This study furthers to connect the modern studies ofpure mathematics withphysics .**Bibliography**Notable works of Floyd Williams include:

*Floyd L. Williams. "Topics in Quantum Mechanics", (Progress in Mathematical Physics, Birkhauser, 2003)

*Floyd L. Williams. "Lectures on the spectrum of $L^2(Gamma\; ackslash\; G)$", (John Wiley & Sons, Inc., New York, 1991)

*Andrei A. Bytsenko and Floyd L. Williams (Editors). "Mathematical Methods in Physics", (Proceeding of the 1999 Londrina Winter School, World Scientific Pub., 2000)

*Floyd L. Williams. "Tensor products of principal series representations: Representations of complex semisimple Lie groups", (Lecture Notes in Mathematics, Vol. 358. Springer-Verlag, Berlin-New York, 1973)**External links*** [

*http://www.math.umass.edu/Fac_Staff_Students/Faculty/Williams/index.html Floyd Williams' Homepage*]

* [*http://www.math.buffalo.edu/mad/PEEPS/williams_floydl.html Mathematicians of the African Diaspora*]

* [*http://www.maa.org/summa/archive/Willm_FL.htm SUMMA Archive*]

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