Hohmann, one of the university’s most influential and effective leaders, had previously intended to step down in June 2011. However, he and his wife, Lotte, a middle school history teacher, have decided to retire together this spring.
“We have decided to get this party started sooner rather than later. Lotte has chosen to retire at the end of this June and I will formally retire as the dean of the College of Engineering at the same time,” Hohmann wrote in an email to faculty and staff on Tuesday. “As I mentioned before, I cannot imagine having a more fulfilling career, working alongside some of the best and brightest educators imaginable.”
Hohmann joined Cal Poly Pomona in 1971 as an assistant professor in the then chemical engineering department. He became department chair in 1979 and dean in 1984. During his tenure, the college has consistently been ranked among the top 15 undergraduate programs in the nation, according to US News and World Report.
“The word legendary is more than appropriate when describing Dean Hohmann’s achievements,” said President Michael Ortiz. “He is a true academician who has exemplified the application of a learning-centered education. Ed has made enormous contributions to Cal Poly Pomona and the entire CSU system. His departure leaves a large void in California’s academic engineering community.”
The search process for a new dean has begun, and Provost Marten denBoer will announce next week the interim leadership.
“In my relatively short time here, I have benefited greatly from Ed’s thoughtful perspective and depth of experience on campus,” said Provost Marten denBoer. “Thanks to his leadership, our College of Engineering stands as one of the top academic programs in the nation. Ed’s will be difficult shoes to fill.”
Hohmann also led the development and construction of a state-of-the-art learning center in 2001. The engineering laboratory (Building 17) added nearly 118,000 square feet of classroom and laboratory space for the college. He is the longest serving dean among the 15 engineering colleges in the CSU.