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Augsburg remembers with gratitude the life of Regent Emerita Inez (Olson) Schwarzkopf ’59, who passed away on June 24.
Inez’s gifts of leadership, service, and faith profoundly shaped Augsburg throughout a special lifelong connection to our community. Her father, Iver Olson ’35, taught Norwegian and theology at Augsburg for over 20 years. Inez and all of her siblings followed in his footsteps to Augsburg, where she graduated cum laude in English and served as editor of the yearbook. She went on to pursue a master’s degree at the University of Minnesota and built a freelance career in writing and editing before moving into adult education, communication, organizational development, and marketing for the American Lutheran Church and later the ELCA. Along the way she raised four children and nurtured a passion for travel. She accomplished the remarkable feat of visiting all seven continents in her lifetime.
Throughout her life, Inez remained a steadfast and faithful friend to Augsburg. She served on the Board of Regents from 1982–90 and again from 1992–1998, and was a key player in planning for and establishing the Bernhard Christensen Endowment. She also established the Inez Olson Schwarzkopf Scholarship to support undergraduate students majoring in English. In recognition of her many contributions to Augsburg, she received the Distinguished Alumni Award in 1991.
Inez is survived by her husband, Lyall Schwarzkopf; four children; and six grandchildren. As many of you know, Inez’s daughter Ilse Rolf ’93 and granddaughter Nissa Rolf are valued colleagues in our Institutional Advancement department. A memorial service will be held on Friday, July 7, at 11:00 a.m. at Bethlehem Lutheran Church in Minneapolis. Additional service and visitation details can be found in her full obituary.
Please join me in holding all of Inez’s family and friends in prayer as we grieve her loss and celebrate her life.