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September 8, 2003

Howard Chase, Former Business Professor, Dies

W. Howard Chase, a former faculty member in the School of Business, died Aug. 19. He was 93.

Chase, who had a varied career as educator, public relations specialist, and government official, taught in the Graduate School of Business Administration in Stamford during the late 1970's and early 1980's. He developed the first course in issues management, and helped establish the University's branch in Stamford.

"Howard was a dedicated teacher," says Herbert F. Spirer, professor emeritus of information management and former director of the MBA program in Stamford. Chase loved teaching, and his students learned a great deal from him, Spirer notes.

Chase was a pioneer in the issues management approach to strategic planning. In 1984, he wrote Issue Management: Origins of the Future, a book on corporate problem solving.

Chase grew up in Sioux City, Iowa, and received a bachelor's degree from the University of Iowa. He began his career as an editorial writer at the Des Moines Register in the 1930s. In 1935, he taught international relations at Harvard University.

He later became director of public relations at General Foods in New York City, and from 1941 to 1945, worked at General Mills in Minneapolis, where he created the company's public relations department. In 1947, Chase helped found the Public Relations Society of America.

In 1951, he was named political public relations director for Gen. Dwight D. Eisenhower and was in charge of the Republican Convention arrangements for Eisenhower's nomination in 1952. Chase became the assistant secretary of commerce after Eisenhower's election, a position he held during the early stages of mobilization for the Korean War. He was also deputy administrator for the Office of Defense Mobilization under Charles Wilson, Lucius Clay, and Sidney Weinberg.

Chase also was vice president and assistant to the chairman for public affairs of the American Can Co. in Greenwich, before he retired in 1975.

He is survived by two daughters and a son; eight grandchildren, and 11 great-grandchildren.

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