University of South Florida

College of Education

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Dr. William Gilbert Katzenmeyer

Former USF College of Education Dean passes away leaving a profound legacy to carry on

The University of South Florida College of Education is deeply saddened by the passing of former dean, Dr. William Gilbert Katzenmeyer.

On October 16, 2022, two days after his 93rd birthday, William Gilbert Katzenmeyer passed away. A beloved father and husband, teacher of teachers, inspiring mentor, Dr. Katzenmeyer is remembered for his intelligence, eager curiosity, gentle kindness, joie de vivre, and tireless faith in humanity.

Bill was born in Cleveland, Ohio, on October 14, 1929, to parents Robert Dahl Katzenmeyer and Violet Gilbert Katzenmeyer. 

He graduated from John R. Buchtel High School in Akron, Ohio, and was accepted to Duke University on a Naval scholarship. In return for his Duke education, Bill served his country in the U.S. Navy on a destroyer and later as a submariner on the USS Blenny 324. He earned his undergraduate degree at Duke, graduating with an A.B. in Mathematics Education and began his teaching career as a teacher of math and physics in Battle Creek, Michigan, later serving in numerous administrative roles at the district level in Jackson, Michigan. Bill returned to Duke earning an M.A. in Guidance and Counseling and later his Ed.D in Administration/Supervision and Statistics. He began his higher education career as professor and graduate faculty at the University of Wisconsin and served as Director of the Wisconsin Information System for Education. Bill returned to Duke as a professor of educational research and later served as Associate Dean of the Graduate School. He remained a lifelong Blue Devils fan.

In 1977 Bill joined the University of South Florida as Dean of the College of Education, where he served for 17 years.  In that post, he is credited with significantly increasing student enrollment and launching several highly respected programs and institutes for teacher education, including the David C. Anchin Center for the Advancement of Teaching and the Suncoast Area Teacher Training (SCATT) program. 

Bill stepped down as Dean of the USF College of Education in 1994. He became a faculty member in the Department of Educational Measurement and Research and served as the director of the Anchin Center until his retirement in 2004.

He is survived by his devoted, loving wife Marilyn Heindel Katzenmeyer and children David Katzenmeyer (Paige Blackman), Amy Lynn Katzenmeyer (Daniel Headrick), Adam Arrington (Lisa Arrington), Tracey Mullet (Steve Mullet); grandchildren Sarah Bennett (Rusty), Mandy Brickner (Sean), Krista Katzenmeyer, Kacey Katzenmeyer, Zachary Arrington (Caroline), Luke Arrington and Anna Arrington; and six greatgrandchildren. He is preceded in death by son John Katzenmeyer, granddaughter Kelley Katzenmeyer and his older brother Robert D. Katzenmeyer.

Bill enjoyed loving relationships with Robert’s children: Jody Doerer, Martha Giblas, Mark Katzenmeyer, Laura Zoroya, Jean Livingston and their families.

A man of great energy, incisive wit, wide-ranging interests and deep spiritual commitment, Dr. Katzenmeyer flew airplanes, performed in community theater, sang in choirs, cooked gourmet meals and wrote poetry. He loved tennis, swimming, mountain biking, Duke basketball, art, music, literature, architecture and design. He made applesauce, crafted furniture, built homes, nurtured young people and gathered bouquets of lifelong friendships.

Generous in spirit to those he touched throughout a long life well-lived, William G. Katzenmeyer shall be missed and warmly remembered. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to the Dr. William Katzenmeyer Memorial Scholarship, and mailed to the USF Foundation, Office of Donor Relations, 4202 East Fowler Avenue, ALC 100, Tampa, FL 33620-5455, or gifts can be made online here

A Celebration of Life will be held at the TECO Hall in the David C. Anchin Center, University of South Florida College of Education, on Saturday, February 18, 2023, at 1:00 p.m. 

For online condolences, please visit Cremations of Greater Tampa Bay here.

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About the USF College of Education:

As the home for more than 2,200 students and 130 faculty members across three campuses, the University of South Florida College of Education offers state-of-the-art teacher training and collegial graduate studies designed to empower educational leaders. Our college is nationally accredited by the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP), and our educator preparation programs are fully approved by the Florida Department of Education.