Bob DiPaolo is pictured in his classroom with students. LC file photo

Bob Everett celebrates his birthday in his classroom on the third floor of Caldwell Hall. LC file photo

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GODFREY - As the Spring 2024 semester has come to a close, Lewis and Clark Community College is looking back on the lasting impacts left by two business faculty members who died within a week of one another early in the semester, in unrelated events.

Robert Everett, of St. Charles, Missouri, died Tuesday, Jan. 23, at the age of 81. Robert DiPaolo, 79, of Bethalto, died three days later, on Jan. 26.

“Both men left lasting impacts on the college and its business programs that won’t soon be forgotten,” said L&C President Ken Trzaska.

Many people knew the “Bobs from the Business Department.”

They would often have lunch with one another and get into heated conversations around economics that could be heard down the hallway, remembers Professor Doug Schneiderheinze, who was hired under DiPaolo in 2007 and is now coordinator of the Accounting and Management programs.

DiPaolo joined the college as a professor in August 1983 and served as a coordinator for the programs. Upon his retirement in 2012, he was named Professor Emeritus. That fall, he returned to teaching as an adjunct, and continued teaching until the very end.

Among DiPaolo’s many honors and distinctions, he was listed in Who’s Who Among America’s Teachers, and was a member of Beta Gamma Sigma, the national business honorary society.

During his tenure at Lewis and Clark, he chaired the Faculty Incentive Program Committee, developed a checklist approach to the faculty promotion portfolio system, and developed the program for an organized method for the evaluation of non-traditional learning.

DiPaolo also participated in negotiations with senior institutions that allowed for the transferability of all AAS (Associate in Applied Science) credit in certain business disciplines, and developed a systematic approach to the administration of the Business Department co-op and 30 and Out programs. He also designed and maintained a comprehensive departmental website and assisted with the development of the AIM Program.

According to his Professor Emeritus nomination, submitted in 2012 by then-Dean of Liberal Arts and Business Jill Lane, DiPaolo took the lead on numerous major curricular changes, culminating in an alignment beginning with Certificate of Proficiency and Certificate of Completion programs, all the way through Associate in Applied Science (AAS), Bachelor of Science (BS) and Master of Science (MS) pathways.

“He has been a mentor and role model for his colleagues in the business programs as well as numerous adjunct faculty members over the years,” Lane wrote.

Schneiderheinze worked directly under DiPaolo’s leadership from 2007-2012, but before that, he took an economics class with him while in pursuit of his master’s degree.

“He was a good instructor,” Schneiderheinze said. “He really enjoyed teaching – especially the technology part of it.”

An economist, DiPaolo developed SAQs (standard assessment questions) to ensure all the economics instructors at Lewis and Clark were sharing knowledge and teaching the same standards across the board.

Schneiderheinze said DiPaolo was only a dissertation short of earning his doctorate and was big into research.

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“He also had a lounge chair recliner in his office, and people would always come in and talk to him,” Schneiderheinze remembered.

Everett, a certified public accountant (CPA) since 1979, was hired in August 1993 as an associate professor.

Retired Accounting Professor Margie Sinclair-Parish worked with DiPaolo for 30 years, and Everett for 20. When she received the news that both passed away within a week of each other, she was devastated.

Sinclair-Parish remembers when Everett joined the team. Previously, he had taught at St. Louis Community College for a decade, in addition to more than 20 years of corporate financial experience.

“Later in his career, he had determined that what he wanted to do was teach,” she said. “He had the perfect combination of work experience and teaching experience.”

Everett was promoted to professor in 2007 and retired in May 2013.

Schneiderheize said Everett was the college’s main accounting instructor for a while and taught many of the upper-level accounting courses offered at Lewis and Clark.

“He was a very accomplished accountant,” Schneiderheinze said. “He really enjoyed teaching and had fun doing it.”

Schneiderheinze said Everett also taught some economics courses.

“And he always had Willie Nelson playing in the office,” Schneiderheinze recalled.

Both men shared a love of teaching, but left loving legacies outside of the college as well.

DiPaolo was also a member of Our Lady Queen of Peace Catholic Church in Bethalto, where he was a 3rd Degree Knight with the Knights of Columbus, according to his obituary. He also served on the Bethalto Zoning Board and Bethalto Village Board for many years. He was a Scoutmaster for Boy Scout Troop 101.

“Bob enjoyed working on his computer, listening to music, watching sports, and spending time with his family,” DiPaolo’s obituary read.

Everett served in the United States Air Force for five years and was a dedicated father and husband for over 50 years, according to his obituary.

“(Everett) was always learning, he enjoyed reading mysteries, horror and biographies and always had an interest in history,” it read. “Robert had a grand coin and baseball card collection. In his free time, he liked going golfing and bowling.”

Memorials in DiPaolo’s name are suggested to St. Jude's Children's Hospital.

Memorials may be made in Everett’s name to the ASPCA.

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