Passings: Margaret Beare

Remembered for her many contributions to Osgoode Hall Law School, the York University community is mourning the passing of Professor Margaret Beare, who died peacefully on Aug. 10.

Margaret Beare

Born in Markham, Ont., and raised on a farm near Agincourt, Ont., Beare was educated at Guelph University (BA ’68, MA ’71), Cambridge University in England (diploma in criminology, ’74) and Columbia University in New York (PhD ’87). Her career in transnational police policy and the study of organized crime began with her role as senior research officer in the Office of the Solicitor General, 1982-93. She joined the faculty of York University in the Sociology Department with a cross appointment to the Osgoode faculty in 1995. She was the founding director of the Nathanson Centre for the Study of Organized Crime & Corruption (now called the Jack & Mae Nathanson Centre on Transnational Human Rights, Crime & Security) and remained a faculty member at York until her death.

“As we know, Margaret was a wonderful colleague and a dedicated scholar, who provided mentorship and guidance to a very large number of our graduate students who were attracted to Osgoode by her presence on the faculty,” said Osgoode Dean Mary Condon. “Among her many accomplishments, she was a major contributor to the work and the success of the Nathanson Centre at Osgoode. I know you will all join me in expressing our deepest sympathies to Margaret’s family and friends at this time.”

Beare is the author of Criminal Conspiracies: Organized Crime in Canada and numerous edited and co-authored books and articles on money laundering, international policing policy, gang violence and social justice. Her work involved extensive travel throughout Southeast Asia and South America. Her consultancy work as a leading authority on criminal activity was ongoing up until her last illness.

“Margaret was a valued member of the LA&PS community,” said J.J. McMurtry, interim dean of the Faculty of Liberal Arts & Professional Studies (LA&PS). “We will always remember her immense contributions to the Department of Sociology and the York University community at large.”

When Beare wasn’t working or travelling, she was listening to Leonard Cohen, throwing dinner parties, walking Harley (the latest of several golden retrievers) or relaxing at her cabin on Chemong Lake.

She is survived by her daughter, Nhai Nguyen-Beare (Ryan Maleganeas) and her Peterborough sisters, Bernadine Dodge (James Driscoll) and Christine Kearsley (Robert Kearsley). She is also survived by her niece, Kathleen Burneau (Gus Burneau) of Toronto, and will be mourned by a host of friends around the world.

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