Gregory Pease Passes Away

Photograph: Gregory Pease.Washburn University School of Law is sad to report that Emeritus Professor of Law Gregory Pease passed away on Monday, December 21, 2020. Professor Pease was 79.

Professor Gregory Pease grew up in Springfield, Illinois, and graduated cum laude from Wichita State University with bachelor's degrees in English and psychology in 1964. After college he had to choose between working with the family candy business or seeking additional education. He chose the latter, and after initially pursuing a doctorate degree in philosophy transferred to the University of New Mexico Law School where he obtained his law degree in 1970.

Following law school, Greg became a law clerk for 10th Circuit Court of Appeals Judge Oliver Seth, then in 1972 joined the law faculty at Ohio Northern University College of Law in Ada, Ohio, where he also served as the assistant dean and law review advisor. In 1976, he accepted an invitation to join the Washburn Faculty. While at Washburn, his primary teaching responsibilities included Decedents' Estates, Trusts and Future Interests, Property I, and Law and Literature. He began a phased retirement in 2007 and taught his last classes in the spring of 2013.

Photograph: Gregory Pease in the early 1990s.Greg authored chapter 59 of the 2000 Supplement for Vernon’s Kansas Statutes Annotated and for many years also chaired the law school admissions committee. In all of his time at Washburn, however, his love of teaching exceeded his enjoyment of other responsibilities. Those feelings were reflected by opinions of his students who selected him as the William O. Douglas Professor of the Year six times (1983, 1992, 1996, 1999, 2003, 2006; see photos below), a number unmatched by any other member of the Washburn faculty.

Greg's life outside of the law school was devoted to his family; his wife Joan, their two children and four grandchildren. He also enjoyed a sequence of other passions, most seemingly linked by the letter “g”: gardening, gaming, glassworks, golf, guns, and guitars. He had particularly fond memories of playing golf with his former colleagues Ray Spring and John Kuether. Other sources of enjoyment included opera, literature, and Professor Elrod’s chocolate chip cookies.

Greg will be missed by those who knew him well. His dry wit set him apart in ways that will be hard to match. He asked for little and gave much to all who had the privilege of being his students, colleagues, or friends.

A memorial fund at Washburn Law will be created to honor Professor Pease's legacy. Gifts should be made to the Washburn University Foundation and include Gregory Pease Memorial in the memo. Gifts can be made online or sent to:

Washburn University Foundation
Gregory Pease Memorial
1729 MacVicar Ave
Topeka, KS 66604

See also Greg Pease's obituary at the Dove Cremations and Funerals website.

Washburn Law Journal Professor of the Year Dedications:
1983 | 1992 (Part A, Part B | 1996 | 1999 | 2003 | 2006

Photograph: Gregory Pease, 1983 Professor of the Year. Photograph: Gregory Pease, 1992 Professor of the Year. Photograph: Gregory Pease, 1996 Professor of the Year.

Photograph: Gregory Pease, 1999 Professor of the Year. Photograph: Gregory Pease, 2003 Professor of the Year. Photograph: Gregory Pease, 2006 Professor of the Year.