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Remembering Gus Kass

Contact Author Rachel Grabenhofer
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Stanley Allured and Gus Kass

(from L): Stanley Allured poses with Gus Kass as he received the Stanley Allured Lifetime Service Award, presented to him by the Midwest SCC in 2011.

Industry veteran Gus S. Kass passed away on April 6, 2015. He was one of the Midwest SCC founding members, for which he was presented the Stanley Allured Lifetime Service Award in 2010. He joined the SCC in 1948, and his 64 years in the industry included a significant amount of work in hair care.

During an April 2011 SCC meeting, he accepted the award, noting “I became a cosmetic chemist at my first job, although I did not realize it then." Throughout his career, Kass supported the educational mission of the MWSCC by speaking at monthly meetings and other professional events on topics related to hair care such as: oxidative coloring, permanent waving, stability testing of hair preparations, evaluation of shampoos and single fiber tensile kinetics.

As an emeritus member of the SCC, he served the SCC in roles such as professional affairs chair (1970–1971) and annual seminar technical program (1974). Perhaps what he is best known for, however, was appearing in “X-perts at your Service,” a mini-series sponsored by the Chicago Technical Societies Council on the WTTW television network. Kass spoke about the theory and chemistry of hair waving solutions and discussed the principles of emulsifying agents and their use. He was joined on the television program by George Kolar (Kolar Laboratories), Eugene Rose (Gene Rose Company), and William Colburn, PhD (Colburn Laboratories), who served as moderator.

Kass was a loving husband to the late Shirley, nee Herron; cherished father of Barbara (Barry) Kipnis and Marilyn Ring; adored grandfather of Jason (Shubha) Kipnis, Stacey (Ron) Geer, Alison (Lee) Hertz, Jeremy (Carrie) Ring and Jami (Christopher) Turner. Also, dear great-grandfather of Jonah and Lindsey Geer, Tavi and Lena Kipnis, Erin and Alex Hertz Preston and Dylan Turner and Sofie Ring; and brother of the late Sidney Cass and Lawrence (Gertrude) Kasakoff. Graveside services were held on April 8, 2015, in Skokie, Ill.

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