In Memoriam: Laurence E. Lynn Jr.

News Type
Crown Family School News
Larry Lynn in a black and white picture in a suit

Laurence E. Lynn, Jr., passed away January 1, 2023 after a brief illness. He was born June 10, 1937 in Long Beach, CA to Laurence Sr., and Marjorie (Hart) Lynn. He earned an AB degree in economics from the University of California, Berkeley, and a doctoral degree in economics from Yale University.

Larry was the Sydney Stein, Jr. Professor of Public Management at the University of Chicago (emeritus since retiring in 2002), having served on the faculties of the Harris School of Public Policy and the Crown Family School of Social Work, Policy, and Practice (then the School of Social Service Administration -- SSA), where he was dean from 1983 to 1988.

In 1992, he created the SSA Management Institute which brought resources from the larger University community to develop programs to improve the quality of management and leadership in social service organizations.

His other faculty affiliations during his academic career included the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University, the Graduate School of Business at Stanford University, The George Bush School of Government and Public Service at Texas A&M University, the Lyndon B. Johnson School of Public Affairs at the University of Texas at Austin, and the Manchester (UK) Business School. During his academic career, Larry also served in various positions with public and nonprofit organizations, including the National Research Council, the World Bank, the Brookings Institution, and Chicago's Metropolitan Planning Council. His work is included in 2021 report, published by Elsevier BV and included in PLOS Biology, of the top 2% for scholarly citations worldwide.

Larry spent nearly a decade in senior policy making positions in the U.S. federal government, including the Department of Defense, where he was deputy assistant secretary for resource analysis; the National Security Council, where he was director of program analysis; the Department of Health, Education and Welfare, where he was assistant secretary for planning and evaluation; and the Department of Interior, where he was assistant secretary for program development and budget. He was a first lieutenant in the U.S. Army Infantry from 1964 to 1966.

For his public service, Larry received the Secretary of Defense Meritorious Civilian Service Medal and a Presidential Certificate of Distinguished Achievement, and in 1980, he was elected to the National Academy of Public Administration.

For lifetime contributions to public administration research and practice, he was selected as the John Gaus lecturer by the American Political Science Association, a recipient of the Dwight Waldo and Paul Van Riper awards by the American Society for Public Administration, the recipient of the inaugural H. George Frederickson award of the Public Management Research Association, and the Charles H. Levine Memorial Lecturer at American University.

In addition to his many scholarly publications, Larry published three poetry collections: Out of My Mind: Poems, Older Now, and It Takes A Lifetime.

Larry loved road trips in the family's Econoline van ("the Crimson Crusher"), loaded with his children and camping gear. The goal of one fondly remembered trip was riding every rollercoaster to be found from the east coast to the southwest. Moving on from Washington, DC to living in New Hampshire opened up much-loved opportunities for canoeing the rapids, skiing, and hiking the beautiful countryside.

Larry loved music, and learning to play the banjo became a lifetime commitment. Bluegrass was his passion, with country music a very close second. The City of Chicago was a special place and home, offering up endless joys-music, art, architecture, theater, sports, community, and education-especially watching his child perform in ballet and musical theater.

Traveling the world and finding a home for 22 years in the beautiful Andalusian village of San Pablo de Buceite, Spain, where he was embraced by la familia and welcomed into their home, was a treasure. There he enjoyed meeting and becoming friends with many of the wonderful folks in the village and especially feeling the joy when Spain won the World Cup in soccer, as well as sharing the veranda overlooking el campo, a precious tradition.

Always and for his lifetime, Larry cherished good food and good wine with family, friends, and colleagues.

He is survived by his wife of 50 years, Patricia (Ramsey), five children: Katherine Bell Lynn, Julia (Pepe) Coronado, Diana Lynn (Carl King), Daniel (Elizabeth) Lynn, and Steev (Reme Damasco) Lynn; nine grandchildren: Emelia Bell and Sami Bell Lynn, Camila and Marco Coronado, Dylan Coulter, Jesse and Hana Lynn, and Senou and Braxton Lynn; five great grandchildren, and his half-brother, Greg Lynn.