Published: March 11, 2024

Chuck Howe, Professor Emeritus of Economics, passed away on March 3, 2024, at the age of 93.​

Chuck Howe was born in Dayton, Ohio in 1931.

The family, which included younger son John, moved to Westerville, Ohio in 1937. At the conclusion of World War II, the family moved to Joplin, Missouri.

Chuck graduated from Joplin High in 1948 where he met his future wife, JoAnne Blanke. He attended Rice University (then Rice Institute) from 1948 to 1952, majoring in Economics and graduating Phi Beta Kappa and one of ten Outstanding Seniors chosen by a faculty-student board.

At graduation, he was Commissioned Ensign in the U.S. Navy, stationed in Long Beach, California, but returned briefly to Joplin to marry JoAnne who then accompanied him to Long Beach where Chuck's ship, minesweeper U.S.S. Redstart, was stationed.

The honeymoon was short-lived since Chuck's ship departed for Korea in December, 1952, returning to the U.S. in June, 1954.
Chuck enrolled in the Economics Ph.D. program at Stanford, receiving the degree in 1958.

With two children added, they moved to Purdue University where Chuck was Assistant Professor of Economics in the emerging Krannert School of Management where he taught Management Science.

At that time, Chuck also began research in the water resources field, producing a book on the Economics of Inland Water way Transportation that was published by Resources for the Future in Washington, D.C. In 1964, JoAnne, Chuck, and now four children, took a temporary post at the University of East Africa in Nairobi, Kenya, sponsored by the Rockefeller Foundation's University Development Program to help build the program in Economics.

Chuck continued water research with management studies of the Tana River Basin in northeastern Kenya. On the basis of Chuck's water research, he was invited in 1965 to join the staff of Resources for the Future as Director of the Water Resources Program.

The family moved to D.C. where they lived until 1970 when Chuck was appointed Professor of Economics at the University of Colorado-Boulder.

Chuck was appointed a Fellow of the American Geophysical Union in 1973 based on his water research and a Fellow of the Association of Environmental and Resource Economists in 2012. He was the principal author of the 2007 Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change that was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.

Chuck and JoAnne, with whatever children were at home or able, continued to travel, both for work and for pleasure. They lived in Indonesia, Holland and England and traveled more to countries on every continent.

Chuck was an avid runner, having competed in more than 30 Bolder Boulder (10K) races as well as several Crescent City Classics in New Orleans. While in Indonesia he was part of the Hash House Harriers running group.

After this accomplished career, Chuck and JoAnne retired to Frasier Meadows Retirement Community in Boulder, where they became a valued part of that community for over 20 years.

Chuck died March 3, 2024, and is survived by his wife of 71 years; children John, Karen, Bo (Conway) and Kathy (Larry); seven grandchildren: Theron, Sarah, John, Ray, Morgan, Lauren, Luke; and one great-grandchild, Addison.

The family extends special thanks to all the staff of the Summit Care Center at Frasier for their devoted and loving care in the last year of Chuck's life. Their dedication is remarkable.

In lieu of flowers, please consider donating to Frasier Meadows Retirement Community.

There will be a Celebration of Life on Friday, April 12 at 2:30pm in the Eldorado Room at Frasier. All are welcome.

In Chuck Howe's honor, make a gift to the Economics Department.