97-year-old mechanical engineer Dick Hill remains a fixture on the WVOM radio show “Hot and Cold.”
Hill started the home improvement show alongside Tom Gozce three decades ago, following his tenure at Maine Public Radio.
“I so enjoy that interaction of my presumed theoretical interaction of Dalton’s law and thermodynamics and so on, and interacting with someone who does the work. That’s a very refreshing exchange,” said Hill.
Hill joined the faculty at the University of Maine in 1946. In fact, he’s the only professor who started in the 40s who’s still alive today.
“I was hired as an assistant professor of mechanical engineering. And during part of the time I was actually acting dean of the college of engineering. I was director of the Industrial Research Facility. And I hold several patents,” said Hill.
Professor Hill’s accomplishments at home are equally impressive…for 62 years he’s been hosting Chinese grad students and their families.
“I have a family of graduate students that keep me young. I help them with their English. I’ve been doing that since 1953,” said Hill.
He always has a project he’s working on around the house…from a wood-fired clothes dryer to a climate-controlled fresh-water bird bath to this innovative way of gauging humidity.
“i’ve so far escaped any of the Alzheimers. I think I’m as good as I ever was,” said Hill.
In addition to his radio duties, Hill also regularly writes columns for local newspapers.
“I try hard to stay involved in the academic arena as best I can, based on the assumption that everybody’s entitled to my opinion,” said Hill.
An engineer, radio personality, and mentor, with a always-active mind, proving age is just a number.
“Oh, I have no idea what 97 is supposed to feel like,” said Hill.