With sadness I share the news that Professor Emeritus Robert Rechnitz passed away peacefully on Sunday, October 13. Dr. Rechnitz’s influence on generations of students during his more than 30 years as a professor of English and American Literature, as well as his contributions to the entire University as a generous friend and benefactor, will never be forgotten.
Dr. Rechnitz was named Professor Emeritus in 1996 and was recognized with the Maurice Pollak Award for Distinguished Community Service in 2001 at our Founders’ Day celebration and convocation.
His legacy at Monmouth extends to almost every area of our University, including scholarship and internship opportunities for students, academic programming, and substantial investment in Monmouth University’s Center for the Arts and Urban Coast Institute. Robert and Joan generously funded the showcase instructional arts center named in their honor and officially dedicated in 2013. They were also the lead benefactors of the successful $5 million Challenge Grant campaign to support the Urban Coast Institute’s Marine Science & Policy Initiative. More recently, they established the endowed Rechnitz Family Urban Coast Institute Chair in Marine and Environmental Law & Policy.
His philanthropic commitment to the arts, healthcare, the environment, and civic improvement across our entire region enhanced the quality of life for many who were not fortunate enough to know him personally.
Our flag will remain lowered half-staff in his memory, and I will share details about additional memorial services planned as they are available.
Patrick F. Leahy