A memorial service to commemorate David Allen, a CSU political science professor who died March 27, will be held Saturday.
The service will take place at 10 a.m. in room 203 of the Music Building on campus and will provide Allen’s family, students, friends and colleagues a chance to honor his accomplishments and share their memories.
Allen worked in the Department of Political Science since 1987.
Maralina Schoenfelder, a former student of Allen’s, reflected on the impact he had on her life.
“He made me feel so valued as a person and like somebody believed in me,” said Schoenfelder, who graduated from CSU and now works as an intake specialist at Larimer County Hub Child Protection. “I can’t even express how amazing, kind and generous to his students this guy was.”
Schoenfelder is one of several students Allen provided the opportunity to intern in British Parliament. Allen worked to get CSU involved in the Hansard Scholarship Program, which made these internships possible. Each year he handpicked five or six students from his political science classes to participate in the program.
Allen called Schoenfelder at her house one night and asked if she wanted to go to London for the internship. When she said she did not have the funds, he helped her raise enough money.
“If David saw potential in you, you felt like you had this ally,” Schoenfelder said. “He always went to bat for students.”
Allen’s colleagues also said they remember him fondly.
Scott Moore, a political science professor, said he remembers Allen mostly as a teacher and as an adviser.
“I think the thing that was so outstanding about David was the kind of care he gave to his advisees,” Moore said. “And even though on first impression you might be struck by what you might call his ‘crustiness,’ he was extraordinarily kind to his advisees.”
Moore said he will miss Allen’s “dry wit” the most.
“I think anybody you talk to would say David Allen was by far and away the most colorful member of our faculty,” said Kathryn Hochstetler, a political science professor. “He was one of those people who would always come by and ask how things were.”
She also said Allen may have scared some students on their first impressions of him.
“He was a very large and imposing person, and he used to come in on the first day of class with his robes on, and I think many students found him intimidating,” she said. “But students who stayed the course would learn that he was really committed to their success. I think that for a number of students he was helpful in ways that went way beyond the classroom.”
Hochstetler worked with Allen for seven years and said he was a caring and thoughtful person.
“It’s really hard for me to imagine that he’s not going to walk up to my door,” said Alexandra Bernasek, a CSU economics professor worked down the hall from Allen for about ten years. “I just keep expecting to see him there.”
Bernasek said she and Allen shared one main thing in common: the love of teaching.
“He was really committed to teaching, and to his students as people,” Bernasek said. “He liked being influential in their development.”
Bill Chaloupka, another political science professor and the department chair, is planning and organizing Allen’s memorial. Chaloupka has planned to speak at the service, along with about nine of Allen’s other colleagues and his brother.
Chaloupka has invited the campus community to attend the memorial on Saturday. A reception at the Lory Student Center University Club will follow the service.