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Rudolph “Rudy” Lamone, Dean of the U. Md. business school, dies at age 91

Rudolph P. “Rudy” Lamone, a University of Maryland professor who served as dean of the business school for nearly two decades and helped establish an entrepreneurship center at the school, died Jan. 30 at a hospital in Annapolis. He was 91 and lived in Annapolis.

The cause was complications from covid, his wife Linda said.

“When Rudy came to Maryland, it was a mediocre business school that was overwhelmed with students, had limited resources, and was far from the business school we wanted,” said William E. “Brit” Kirwin, former president of the University of Maryland .

“He also understood the evolving role of entrepreneurship that was emerging at the time, and he understood the value of fundraising and the involvement of the private sector in the school,” added Kirwin, who served as chancellor and general manager of the University of Maryland from 2002 to 2015.

“Most deans spend time raising money, managing staff, but with him it was all about the students,” says Charles Ota Heller, a colleague and friend. “He helped them with their personal problems, bent the rules to help them, and had connections all over the country and helped them get jobs.”

Rudolph Phillip Lamone, son of Italian immigrant parents from Abruzzo, was born in Wellsburg, W.Va., on December 20, 1931.

In his youth he was an accomplished saxophonist. Lying about his age and using the end of a burnt cork to mimic a fake beard and stubble, he sneaked into Pittsburgh nightclubs through dimly lit back entrances to avoid being recognized as a minor, family members said.

After graduating from high school, he toured the country with big bands. He served in an army band from 1952 to 1955, then received a bachelor’s degree in 1958 from Campbell College (now Campbell University) in Buies Creek, NC. He completed his doctorate from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 1966.

He then began teaching business at U.Md., where he served as dean of the business school from 1973 to 1992. He was also responsible for establishing an entrepreneurship center in the late 1980s with the help of a $1 million gift from an alumnus and benefactor.

Dr. Lamone lured Heller into coming to college.

“I owned a software company and Rudy persuaded me to come and run the entrepreneurship center in 1990,” said Heller. . He felt it should be a student major and the University of Maryland needed a center for those ideas, and of course all of that came from him, and he was able to convince the Maryland authorities and make it happen.

In 1998 Dr. Lamone the President’s Medal from the University of Maryland.

He was a self-employed entrepreneur and co-founder of DirectGene, a biotechnology company that developed gene therapies aimed at treating metastatic prostate and breast cancer. He was also a venture partner with Gabriel Venture Partners in Annapolis and Redwood Shores, California.

In 1970 he married Linda Hefler. In addition to his wife, there is also a brother among the survivors.

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