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In Memory of Reid Strieby, PhD, ’74

Reid Strieby, PhD

Fielding is mourning the loss of one of its very first students – and first graduate – Reid Strieby, PhD, who passed away May 26, 2019, at the age of 86.

Dr. Strieby came to Fielding Institute in 1974 to complete a PhD that he had started elsewhere. He was a veteran of the Korean War who had bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the University of Chicago and had been working at the National Opinion Research Center there as well as teaching at the Illinois Institute of Technology and Roosevelt University.

“I came to fielding because I liked the culture. I liked the faculty – and a lot of the staff was not much older than me,” he told us recently. “I thought the students were unbelievably interesting. They were older, they came from diverse backgrounds. And how many people are going to go to a college and get to know the president? Not too many!”

But he did become close friends with Fielding’s president Frederick Hudson, and introduced current faculty member Keith Melville, PhD, to Fielding; the two remained friends forever after.

Reid Strieby and his wife Rhonda Liss

Dr. Strieby’s dissertation was on reducing text anxiety among minority students. He went on to become an icon in the New York area for his work supporting AIDS outreach and prevention and helping to build the community college system in the Bronx. As a professor and activist, he helped guide the tremendous growth of the City University of New York (CUNY) and open it to students of all backgrounds. He also helped break new ground in environmental technology by spearheading sustainable energy programs at colleges throughout CUNY.

He credited Fielding with much of his success. “I very much enjoyed my time at Fielding,” he told us. I left with the key to my future.”