Schulich Professor Jerry Dermer, mentor to thousands

The flag will fly at half-mast today to mark the death of Professor Jerry Dermer of York’s Schulich School of Business. Prof. Dermer died on Jan. 23 at the Scarborough General Hospital, after a long battle with lymphoma. He was 66.

For more than 25 years, Prof. Dermer taught strategic policy and management at Schulich. He mentored thousands of students and is remembered by his colleagues as a gentle, dedicated man who was an excellent and inspiring teacher and deeply respected.

Right: Professor Jerry Dermer

"Jerry and I had been colleagues for close to 30 years," said Schulich School of Business Dean Dezsö J. Horváth. "In 1980, when I was Chair of Schulich’s Policy/Strategic Management Area, we hired a young professor named Jerry Dermer who had been teaching at the University of Toronto.

"In those days, the Schulich School of Business was growing by leaps and bounds and it seemed that there were never enough faculty members to teach all the courses we needed," said Horváth. "Jerry was one of those dedicated educators who never turned down a request to take on extra work. In his case, this meant teaching many overload courses and advising far more than the requisite number of 601 Strategy Studies."

Horvath said that generations of Schulich graduates benefitted from Prof. Dermer’s strategy courses, as did those who enrolled in his Schulich executive education courses. "He was highly respected by all he taught," said Horvath. "Typically, despite the severity of his illness, he continued to teach almost until his untimely death on Wednesday. I feel his loss deeply, as will those of you who knew Jerry."

Prior to his time at Schulich, Prof. Dermer taught at the University of Illinois, University of Toronto and MIT. He also taught thousands of students both in Canada and abroad in executive seminars and government training program.

Prof. Dermer leaves his wife Anita (nee Lamberti), children Simon and Benjamin, and brother Bob Dermer.

A funeral service for Prof. Dermer was held yesterday, Jan. 27. Friends, family, students and colleagues are invited to call on the family at 25 Cobham Cres., near the intersection of Victoria Park and Lawrence, in Toronto, today or Wednesday, Jan. 30 from 2 to 4pm, or from 7 to 9pm. For directions, click here

The family has requested that memorial donations be made to the oncology unit of either Scarborough General Hospital, 416-431-8130, or Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre, 4l6-967-8628, or to the Canadian National Institute for the Blind at 4l6-486-2500.