Steve Hunt JD ’84

  • Steve Hunt JD ’84
    Robert Reynolds

Steve Hunt JD ’84, professor emeritus of communication, died on June 27, 2021, at age 74.

Hunt attended the University of Denver and graduated magna cum laude with a double major in history and speech in 1968. He went on to earn an MA in communication at the University of Houston and a PhD in speech communication from the University of Kansas.

In 1973, Hunt joined Lewis & Clark as a faculty member in what was then the communication department. His teaching and research focused on rhetoric and argumentation theory, debate, and political and legal communication. In 1984, he completed a JD at Lewis & Clark Law School. Hunt chaired the communication department several times throughout the 1970s and ’80s and was head of the Social Science Division from 1985 to 1987. He was a member of Phi Beta Kappa and directed L&C’s application for a PBK chapter.

From 1973 until his retirement in 2010, Hunt coached L&C’s speech and debate team to national prominence. Notably, the program won its first national championship in 2005 with a title at the National Parliamentary Debate Association’s championship tournament. Hunt was well known and respected in the national speech and debate community, serving as the president of the Cross Examination Debate Association and journal editor of the Forensic.

“Hunt was an engaged and thoughtful colleague whose first thoughts were how to best serve students, followed by how to best serve the faculty and Lewis & Clark community,” says Bruce Suttmeier, dean of the undergraduate college. “He had an acerbic wit, a big heart, an acute memory for institutional history, and a capacity to extract important documents from towering stacks of files and papers in his office. He kept a meticulous archive of the speech and debate team and stayed in touch with his speakers and debaters long after they graduated.”