Professor Tim Pownall passes away (UPDATE3)

October 10, 2016 — Professor Tim Pownall, Straus Institute for Dispute Resolution¬†Assistant Director and Director of Straus/Seaver Conflict Management Program, passed away last night. In an email to the law school community this morning, Dean Deanell Tacha said:

“It is with a heavy heart and profound sense of loss that I must let you know that our friend and colleague, Tim Pownall, passed away yesterday. Tim was a gifted teacher and a committed peacemaker–known for his dedicated work in reconciliation and thoughtful, constructive dispute resolution through initiatives like the PACIS Project for Interfaith Dialogue. He made extraordinary contributions to the work of the Straus Institute and to the University, spearheading the Institute’s undergraduate dispute resolution certificate program and developing a new course in Dispute Resolution and Religion. Most of all, Tim warmly embraced the opportunity to sit down with students of all ages and backgrounds for a heart-to-heart talk not just about classes and careers, but also life priorities and callings. He was a thoughtful and caring colleague and mentor. His life is cause for joyful reflection and emulation. Students who need someone to talk to during this difficult time can turn to the Straus Institute, the Pepperdine Counseling Center, or any of the deans.

I know you will join me in extending our most sincere thoughts and prayers to the Pownall family, the Straus faculty and staff, and the many people whose lives Tim touched in such important ways. The family has asked for some privacy in these early hours. We will keep you informed as we learn more about memorial plans.

With Sadness,

Deanell

Update1: University Statement (October 11, 2016)

The University has released a statement:

TO: Pepperdine Faculty and Staff
FROM: Public Relations Office
DATE: October 10, 2016
RE: Pepperdine Mourns the Loss of Tim Pownall

The University is saddened to announce the passing of colleague and friend Tim Pownall, assistant director at the School of Law’s Straus Institute for Dispute Resolution. A gifted teacher and a committed peacemaker, Tim was known for his dedicated work in reconciliation and thoughtful, constructive dispute resolution.

Joining the Straus Institute’s leadership team in 2007, Tim made extraordinary contributions to the work of the Straus Institute and to the University. As assistant director, he spearheaded the institute’s undergraduate dispute resolution certificate program and, more recently, helped to develop a new course in dispute resolution and religion. He was also the founding director of the PACIS Project in Faith-Based Diplomacy, a unique international effort encouraging conflict management with interfaith dialogue. A beloved educator and mentor, Tim embraced the opportunity to sit down with students of all ages and backgrounds for heart-to-heart conversations not just about classes and careers, but life priorities and callings as well.

We encourage those who feel they may need additional support to contact the Counseling Center (x4210), the Office of the Chaplain (x4275), or the School of Law dean’s office (x4621). We will keep you informed as more information about memorial plans becomes available and ask that you honor the family’s privacy during this extraordinarily difficult period. In the meantime, please join the University community in lifting up in prayer the Pownall family, the Straus faculty and staff, and the many lives Tim touched in such important ways.

Update2: Community Reaction (October 11, 2016)

Straus Institute Facebook

Dean Al Sturgeon’s Blog

Update3: Memorial Service information

Saturday October 22, 2016 at 11:00am

Conejo Valley Church of Christ
2525 E. Hillcrest Drive
Thousand Oaks, CA 91362

Contact

Tom Inkel | Law Marketing & Events

8 Responses
  1. This was extremely sad news to receive. When I was at Straus, I was going through a lot of personal stuff, it was by far the most challenging time I’ve had. Tim was ALWAYS there for me, rather to be to give advice, let me cry, or give me an extension when I felt too overwhelmed. I couldn’t of gotten through that year and a half nearly as well as I did if it wasn’t for Prof. Pownall. God bless you.

  2. Charles Pereyra-Suarez Reply

    I sat next to Tim Pownall at an ADR dinner sponsored by the Pepperdine law school. We became instant friends, and we talked freely about our common experiences overseas and our similar missionary families. When I mentioned to Tim that my son planned to apply for admission as an undergraduate at Pepperdine, Tim immediately volunteered to guide my son through the application process and to provide him an introduction to the admissions officer who was Tim’s friend. To make a long story short, my son was admitted to Pepperdine with Tim’s help and received honors as the outstanding graduate in interpersonal communications. Tim’s family should appreciate what a wonderful man he was and what a positive impact he had on my family. May he rest in peace.

  3. Ellen Peterson Reply

    This news breaks my heart since, to many of us, Tim Pownall represented the heart & soul and best qualities of Straus Institute.

  4. Prof. Pownall was a wonderful friend and mentor. He taught love and kindness by actions, words & deeds. I will miss him and am very sad learning this news today.

  5. He was a special man. He had a precious way of understand people and the big picture of being kind. I will miss him and I will miss seeing him Sunday Mornings at church. He was a blessing and I light to me and many people. Bud Wilson

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