The University of Chicago News Office
Dec. 21, 2005 Press Contact: Sabrina Miller
(773) 702-4195

Katie Appleby Nash, 1935-2005

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Katie Nash
Katie Nash

Katie Appleby Nash, a former Dean of Students for the College whose service to the University of Chicago spanned more than four decades, has died at the age of 70.

Nash began working at the University as an undergraduate adviser in 1960, and worked her way up to the post of Dean of Students for the College, which she held from 1991 to 2001. In that role, she oversaw academic advising and degree programs, tutoring, scholarships, and personal and academic counseling.

Over the years, she counseled thousands of undergraduates in the College, and friends and associates recalled her loyalty to the students and the University community.

“The thing I remember most is her love for the institution and the students. She had very direct and personal contact with students over the years,” said Edward Turkington, former Deputy Dean of Students for the University.

One of Nash’s enduring legacies was professionalizing and significantly expanding the number of advisers in the Dean of Students’ office, according to current Dean of Students for the College, Susan Art.

Art, who served as Assistant Dean and then Associate Dean under Nash, added that “she was quite an extraordinary mentor.”

Ann Harvilla, now Dean of Students at the Business School, worked with Nash for a decade when Nash was College Dean. Nash also was an adviser to Harvilla when she was an undergraduate. She said students appreciated her honesty.

“Even when she had to deliver a tough message, students understood it was fair,” Harvilla said.

Under Nash’s tenure, the College moved registration online to ensure a more organized and equitable process. This ended the practice of “sleep out,” the ritual of students sleeping out on the student quad the night before registration to get the most popular classes.

Nash called Hyde Park her home for some 43 years. She attended high school in Lake Forest, Ill., and graduated from Grinnell College in Iowa in 1957.

Upon retirement, she volunteered at the Field Museum, where her son Stephen is head of collections in the department of anthropology. She also enjoyed crossword puzzles and mystery novels.

Nash was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease in 2002. She is survived by two sons, Peter and Stephen, and former husband Edward George Nash.

There will be a reception in her honor on Thursday, February 9, from 4-7, at the Quadrangle Club, 1155 E. 57th Street, Chicago, IL 60637.
Last modified at 01:52 PM CST on Friday, January 13, 2006.

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