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The Old Dominion University flag is flying at half-staff in honor of Professor and Dean Emeritus John R. Tabb, the first dean of the College of Business, who died Aug. 29.

Tabb's family will be on campus Monday for a reception to celebrate his life with members of the university community. The reception will be held from 3-5 p.m. in the Hampton/Newport News Room of Webb University Center.

A native of Iowa, Tabb earned his bachelor's and master's degrees in agricultural economics from Iowa State University and his Ph.D. in agricultural finance from Cornell University. After finishing his doctorate, Tabb came to Old Dominion in 1955 as an associate professor of economics and spent 38 years at the university, retiring in 1993.

In a letter to former students a few years ago, Tabb recalled his decision to to come to Old Dominion. "Back in 1955, I admit I had misgivings about leaving the status of Cornell University to come to Norfolk. But Everett Hong, then head of the business department, was quite a salesman. And so was Lewis Webb [Old Dominion's first president.] I never regretted my decision."

An Army veteran of World War II where he earned a Bronze Star and Purple Heart, Tabb also spent nearly a decade in administrative positions with the university, including time as director of planning and development and director of institutional studies. He and his wife, Waulda (Buzz,) were among the founders of the Town-N-Gown organization on campus.

He traveled extenisvely overseas to conduct research and teach, including a year as a Fulbright scholar in Tanzania.

Tabb is survived by his wife; four children, Jon Robert Tabb, James Robert Tabb, Jeffrey Mark Tabb and Tara Jo Tabb Hayden; 10 grandchildren; five great-grandchildren; his sister, Jean Miriam Wilson; and 29 nieces and nephews. He will be buried in his hometown, Corwith, Iowa.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to the John R. Tabb Scholarship Fund in Economics, c/o Dr. Vinod Agarwal, Old Dominion University Economics Department, 2044 Constant Hall, Norfolk, VA 23529.

This article was posted on: August 31, 2002

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