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Life Story for Leo Joseph Schneider

Leo Joseph Schneider
LEO JOSEPH SCHNEIDER, PHD age 72, Mathematics Professor at John Carroll University for 47 years. Beloved husband for 38 years of Susan G. (nee Mazur). Loving father of Carla G. (fiancé Stephen J. Coleman) of Williamsburg, VA and Rita M. Katich (husband Joseph M.) of Williamsburg, VA. Cherished son of the late Leo B. and Margaret A. (nee Helmig) Schneider. Dearest brother-in-law of Robert and Alice Mazur, Joan and Gregory Chouiniere and Nancy Doolin. Dear uncle of Theodore (Andrea), Benjamin, Alison, Ross, Mark and great-uncle of Dax. U.S. Army Veteran.

Dr. Leo J. Schneider, a long-time and beloved member of the John Carroll University Department of Mathematics and Computer Science, died suddenly on June 6, 2010, en route to Kansas City to participate in the annual reading and grading of the country's Advanced Placement Calculus tests.

Leo graduated from Xavier University in Cincinnati with both a bachelor's and a master's degree in mathematics. After two years in the Army Ordnance Corps, Leo joined the faculty of John Carroll University in 1963, where he attained the rank of Professor in 1979. Leo earned his Ph.D. degree in mathematics at Case-Western Reserve University in 1971, having taken a two-year leave from JCU to complete his dissertation research in differential equations. Leo then served as Department Chair from 1971 to 1979.

Since early in his career, Leo had a special interest in the mathematical co-curricular activities of both JCU's students and the wider mathematical student community. At John Carroll, he created a sequence of courses designed to prepare students for actuarial careers, and took a special interest in getting students enthused about doing their own research in mathematics and presenting talks at various conferences. He also instituted a mathematical speakers' bureau, in which he personally averaged about twelve speaking engagements per year for a period of 8-10 years.

Also, since early in his career, Leo took a special interest in national mathematics competitions. From 1974 to 1988, Leo served as Ohio's regional exam coordinator for the American High School Mathematics Exam, and was appointed to the national American Mathematics Competitions Committee in 1980. During the period from 1988 to 1994, he chaired that committee. Under his leadership, the scope of national competitions expanded to include a competition for junior high school students, and an invitational competition for students who scored highly on the AHSME. During these years, Leo gained a reputation as one of the country's premier mathematical problem posers, which led to numerous requests for his participation in the creation and judging of various other regional mathematics competitions.

Leo had been an active member of the Mathematical Association of America, serving a one-year term as President of the Ohio Section of the MAA, and a three-year term as Governor of the Ohio Section. In 2004, he was awarded the Ohio Section's Award for Distinguished College or University Teaching. Since 2002, Leo had also served as the Secretary/Treasurer of Pi Mu Epsilon, the national mathematics honor society.

In spite of all of his professional activities, Leo also found time for relaxation, including attending Cleveland Orchestra concerts, playing bridge, bicycling, cross-country skiing, and perhaps his fondest avocation--traveling. Whether it was camping/hiking vacations in Glacier National Park, or trips to Europe or the east coast, Leo was known for his extensive family travels. Leo is survived by his wife of 37 years, Susan, and their daughters, Carla and Rita.

Leo will always be remembered for his approach to all of his activities: he approached everything he did with boundless energy and the utmost enthusiasm.

The family suggests contributions may be made in Leo’s memory to the Leo J. Schneider Mathematics Research Memorial Scholarship Fund c/o John Carroll University Development Office 20700 North Park Blvd., University Hts, OH 44118

A Mass of Christian Burial will be held on Saturday, June 12, 2010 at 10 AM at St. Noel Catholic Church 35200 Chardon Rd., Willoughby Hills, OH 44094. Interment following at All Souls Cemetery.

The family will receive friends to pay tribute to and celebrate the life of Leo at THE DeJOHN-FLYNN-MYLOTT FUNERAL HOME OF WILLOUGHBY HILLS, 28890 CHARDON ROAD (between Bishop Rd. and Rt. 91) on Friday, June 11, 2010 from 2:00-4:00 and 6:00-9:00 PM.

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