News & Events


Celebration of Life

Professor Emeritus, Charles F. Burke

Baldwin Wallace University

Saturday, April 26, 2014


1:15 p.m.

Family Memorial Circle, Lindsay Crossman Chapel Family. BW community, alumni and friends are welcome at this memorial circle.


2:15 p.m.
Gathering in Rose Garden behind Lindsay Crossman Chapel. Honoring the life and service of Professor Burke with a plaque dedication, words and song.


3:15 p.m.
Brass Chorales from the tower of Marting Hall
(opens the 82nd Bach Festival)


4:00 p.m.
Gathering at Philura Gould Baldwin Library, Political Science Dept. common area outside of Charlie's former office for a salutary toast


4:20 p.m.
Family and friends will reminisce and tell stories about Charlie in the stained glass window room on the top level of Philura Gould Baldwin Library.


In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Charles, Paul & Evelyn Burke Memorial Scholarship. They may be directed to:
Baldwin Wallace University
Attn: Advancement
275 Eastland Rd, Berea, OH 44017

BW Mourns Loss of Charles Burke

Charles F. Burke, 78, Berea, Ohio, long-time professor and chair of political science at Baldwin Wallace University, passed away at his winter home in Ocala, Fla. Nov. 6, 2013.

Throughout his 39-year tenure at BW, the key element in education for Charlie Burke was personal involvement. That may have meant living in a campus residence hall with the students (which he did for years), providing special t-shirts to the students in his residence section who excelled academically, hosting election night parties to monitor returns, developing and leading semester-long travel seminars for in-depth study of the Civil Rights movement, or just about anything else to help students become active learners.
When teaching his popular course in presidential politics, he required that each student (in addition to in-class work) become directly involved in a presidential campaign. He advised the BW Student Senate for many years, helped students to develop their judicial code for the campus, and helped train those involved in the campus judicial system. As long-time adviser, he guided the BW Model UN Team to perennial success in local and national competitions.
For five years, he and former Cleveland City Council President George Forbes taught a popular course in contemporary politics each spring, which also featured local and national political figures, business leaders and community activists.

Born and raised in Greater Boston, Mass. April 21, 1935, son of the late Paul T. and Evelyn M. (Sullivan) Burke, he enlisted in the Army at 17 and served three years, including 18 months in Korea after the signing of the treaty that ended the Korean conflict. He graduated “summa cum laude” from Boston University in 1960, earned his master’s degree in political science from Northeastern University and did additional graduate work at the University of Massachusetts while teaching at both schools.
He joined the BW faculty in 1970 and soon was at the forefront of faculty governance. He served as both chair of the Social Science Division and the Political Science Department several times and he was the first president of the BW Faculty Senate.
In addition to his native English, he was fluent in Latin, Italian, French and Russian.
He is survived by his eight siblings and a large extended family.

Posted Nov. 2013

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