William & Mary

Notice regarding Professor Emeritus Louis E. Catron

Provost Michael Halleran sent the following message to the campus community on Nov. 3, 2010 - Ed.

With deep sadness, I write to inform you that Professor Emeritus Louis E. Catron died on October 30, following a long illness.  Catron was Professor of Theatre, Speech, and Dance at William & Mary for more than 35 years.  A beloved and highly esteemed instructor, Professor Catron is remembered as “a special teacher who continued to nurture former students years after they left William & Mary.”
Louis Catron (Photo courtesy of the University Archives Photograph Collection)Distinguished as both a teacher and director, Professor Catron received the Virginia Council of Higher Education’s Outstanding Faculty Award, was twice named an “Outstanding Educator of America,” and was elected to the William & Mary chapter of Phi Beta Kappa.  He directed more than 50 William & Mary Theatre productions, setting attendance records with many of his musicals.
In addition to his active teaching career, Professor Catron was also an accomplished playwright whose works were performed thousands of times around the world.  He wrote several books, many of which became standard college texts.  A special source of pride to Professor Catron was that many of his students went on to become successful actors, playwrights, screenwriters, and novelists, penning more than 40 books themselves.
A graduate of Millikin University, Professor Catron earned his Ph.D. from Southern Illinois University.  After serving in the Navy during the Korean War, he found success as an actor before embarking upon a teaching career.  He first joined the College in 1966, earning promotions to associate professor in 1969 and professor in 1974.  Upon his retirement from William & Mary in 2002, he was named Professor of Theatre, Speech and Dance, Emeritus.  In retirement, he continued to teach courses for the Christopher Wren Association and was active in the community, volunteering for Meals on Wheels and Faith in Action.
Professor Catron is survived by his son, two brothers, and a sister.  A memorial service is scheduled at 2 p.m. Sunday, November 7, at the Williamsburg United Methodist Church on Jamestown Road. 
In lieu of flowers, the family suggests memorials to the Louis E. Catron Scholarship Fund for Artistic Development which supports W&M students who focus on studio art, creative writing, applied music, or theatre arts.  Gifts should be directed to the Office of Development, College of William & Mary, P.O. Box 8795, Williamsburg, VA  23187-8795.