Robert “Bob” Lear, founder of the School’s Executives in Residence Program, died
on July 9.
The chairman and CEO of F. M. Schaefer Corporation from 1972 to 1977 and the former president and COO of Indian Head, Lear volunteered to serve as a mentor at the School in 1977 and was named its first executive in residence later that year. During the next 22 years, his commitment to connecting executives with students and business education led to the establishment of a formal executives in residence program — among the first of its kind — at the School.
Lear also created an advisory board of executives in such functional areas as accounting and marketing to advise faculty members on the School’s teaching and research programs. Both a classroom and an endowed professorship at the School are named in his honor.
Lear was the author of three books and more than 160 columns in Chief Executive magazine. He also held many corporate directorships and served on the advisory boards of more than a dozen entrepreneurial companies.
Lear has kindly asked that donations in his honor be made to Columbia Business School. If you are interested in making a donation, please contact Rebekkah Brown at firstname.lastname@example.org or 212-854-3427.
Read a tribute to Lear by James Kristie, the associate editor of Directors & Boards, which featured articles by Lear on such topics as succeeding at a turnaround.