Stahrl W. Edmunds
Graduate School of Administration
1917 – 1999
Stahrl W. Edmunds, former dean of the UCR Graduate School of Administration, a true scholar and gentleman, passed away on July 25, 1999. For those of us who were privileged to work with him, his intellectual curiosity, inspiring optimism, easy manner, sense of humor, and sense of humanity will be treasured memories.
Stahrl came to UCR in 1967 as vice chancellor for administration with responsibility for the business operations and budget analysis of the campus. In 1969, he was appointed as founding dean of UCR’s then-Graduate School of Administration, which in later years became the A. Gary Anderson Graduate School of Management. As founding dean, he developed an innovative approach to management education with a set of core courses that all students took before branching out into specialized fields of business, environmental, educational or public administration.
During the planning phase, Dean Edmunds said that the school would embark on “a humanistic approach to administration that will provide tomorrow’s managers with a broader, more socially oriented approach to administration...Students today are committed in one way or another to effecting some positive changes, particularly where they see that the rate of overpopulation, industry and society itself is destroying natural and human resources.” In 1970, he hired several junior faculty members and brought together a distinguished cadre of senior faculty from related fields on campus. Soon the first class of students was admitted. In those early days, everyone was learning and building together. Stahrl stepped down as dean in 1981 but continued teaching until 1986, when he retired as Professor Emeritus. At that moment, the Graduate School of Administration lost its most productive researcher and gifted teacher.
During his academic career, Stahrl authored seven books, twenty-six refereed journal articles, and numerous book chapters and monographs. The extensive range of his scholarship is reflected in the topics he addressed, such as social responsibility in business, performance indicators in growing enterprises, the future of capitalism, environmental policy, market research in the defense-space industry, organizational size and information management, geothermal energy policy, and many others. His papers were regularly published by top journals such as the Harvard Business Review and the Academy of Management Review. He spoke publicly on a wide range of issues such as the aerospace industry, desert land use, small business growth, and international trade.
Stahrl received his bachelor’s degree in economics in 1939 and a Master’s degree in Public Administration in 1942, both from the University of Minnesota. During World War II, he served as a Lieutenant Commander in the U.S. Navy, Pacific Theater. Prior to joining UCR, he held senior executive positions with Hughes Aircraft Company, Ford Motor Company, Booz Allen & Hamilton, McGraw-Hill Publishing Company, and the Agency for International Development.
He is survived by his beloved wife, Amy of Oceanside, and sons Dewey and Rollin. Stahrl was one of the good guys of this world, and he will be sorely missed.