Remembering Larry Hoover, Caux Scholars Program Academic Director 1994-1997
We are deeply saddened by the loss of one of our IofC USA community members. Larry Harold Hoover, Jr., the Caux Scholars Program (CSP) Academic Director from 1994 – 1997, passed away on September 6th in Harrisonburg, Virginia, after a long struggle with Alzheimer’s. As Rob Corcoran, former Executive Director of Initiatives of Change USA recalls, “he played a central role as we launched the Caux Scholars Program.” With his early background with the U.S. Foreign Service and deep engagement with the developing fields of mediation, conflict resolution and conflict transformation, he brought great gifts to CSP.
As his obituary shares, he worked “tirelessly to create alternatives to the adversarial legal system” and “his efforts to refocus the legal profession on the client’s needs changed the nature of the legal system throughout Virginia.” In the 1960s, Larry served as legal adviser to Ambassador Blair at the U.S. Embassy in the Philippines. He was also one of the founders of the Fairfield Center, the first community mediation center in Virginia, and he brought training in mediation skills, including deep listening and searching for the core needs of the adversaries, to CSP. During his tenure, the program had a number of scholars from Serbia, Bosnia and Croatia, at a time when conflict was raging in the region.
He also brought a gentle humor and real care for the scholars to the program. Few will forget his humorous singing skit about baseball, which featured in several CSP talent shows. Dr. Sam G. Doe, a CSP ’95 alumnus from Liberia, who returned as an intern in ’96 while he was doing an MA in conflict transformation at Eastern Mennonite University, and several times thereafter as part of the faculty, writes: “My only experience watching American baseball was made possible by Larry when in 1996 we drove to Philadelphia to watch a match. We spent the entire day hanging out and returned around midnight. He was a friend, a loving one indeed.” Sam, who went on to found the West Africa Network for Peacemaking (WANEP) now works for the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).
Larry’s impact was significant and this can be glimpsed in an interview with good friend, Dr. Barry Hart, Caux Scholars Program Academic Director 1997-2010. We express our condolences to Pat, his wife of 39 years, his daughter, Cornelia, his son, John, and a host of family members and friends.
- Randy Ruffin
Caux Scholars Program Director, 1994 – 1998
Chair, Caux Scholars Program for a number of years thereafter