Victor Gerdes, 98, of Middletown, died at his home on Saturday, July 25, 2020.
He is survived by Rose Mary (née Murnion), his loving wife of more than 60 years; a son, William, of Teaneck; a daughter, Mary, of Short Hills, and her children, Daniel, Jack, and Rose; and a son, Victor, and his wife Lisa of Natick, MA, and their children, Rebecca, Claire, and Abigail.
A retired university Professor of Finance, he received his undergraduate degree in finance from Texas Tech University and M.S., Ph.D., and J.D. from the University of Wisconsin, Madison. He was a full professor at New York University; Northwestern University; Rider University; University of Lagos, Nigeria; Khartoum University, Sudan; Haile Selassie I University, Ethiopia; and a visiting professor at the University of California, Berkeley; and at Youngstown State University . He served as a faculty member at the University of Wisconsin, Beloit College, and the University of Georgia. He lectured at universities in Belgium, England, France, Holland, Italy, and Switzerland. Additionally, under the auspices of the American Council on Education, he served as Academic Planner and advisor to the Vice-Chancellor at the National University of Lesotho, Africa. He was a former Vice President for Academic Affairs at the College of Insurance, New York. From 1954 to 1957, he served as the Director of Research of the Association of Casualty and Surety Companies, now the American Insurance Association.
Dr. Gerdes was a consultant to many corporations, educational organizations and institutions, and professional associations. In the 1980s, he and a small number of insurance executives formed the Insurance Data Management Association. The Association presents the Victor Gerdes Academic Achievement Award to outstanding individuals in the areas of computer and data management.
He was a charter and life member of the Financial Management Association, a life member of the American Economic Association, and an emeritus member of the Wisconsin Bar Association, and belonged to various other professional organizations. He was admitted to the State Bar of Wisconsin in 1953. A long-time member of the Travelers Century Club, he visited over 100 countries and island groups. After his retirement, he studied languages in Germany, Italy, and Spain.
A native of Hallettsville, Texas, he was a World War II veteran, and received various awards, including the EAME (European-African-Middle Eastern) campaign medal with three bronze stars, having participated in the Central European, Rhineland, and Ardennes campaigns. His most lasting memories of the war were those associated with the liberation of the Dachau concentration camp, in which he participated.
In retirement, Victor actively worked out 2-3 a week for 30 years at the Brookdale Community College Fitness Center. Along with his wife Rose Mary, he was passionate about social justice and served at the soup kitchen, food pantry and Manna House. At St. Catherine’s Church daily mass, Victor served as lector.
Victor will be reposing at the Evergreen Memorial Funeral Home 1735 Rt 35 Middletown, New Jersey for immediate family members. A funeral mass for immediate family will be celebrated at St. Catherine’s Church, Holmdel.
A memorial service will be held when conditions permit.
In lieu of flowers, our family prefers donations to be made in Victor’s honor to the St. Vincent de Paul Society of St. Catherine’s Church. Donations can be made here: https://machform.stcatharine.net/view.php?id=156500