Two St. Thomas employees, Jim Ahler (above right) of the Sociology Department and Institutional Research Office and Dr. Eric Jaede of the QMCS Department, were honored by the Rev. Dennis Dease, President, and other guests at a retirees’ reception on Thursday, May 18. Below are a few comments about their academic backgrounds and what they plan to do during retirement.

Jim Ahler taught in our Sociology Department for 32 years. He began his study of sociology at Marquette University where he received a B.A. in 1963 and a master’s degree in 1967. He joined St. Thomas as an instructor in 1967 and became an assistant professor in 1974. Ahler served as department chair from 1983-1988, and was tenured in 1986. In addition to many other areas of research, Ahler conducted a St. Thomas-sponsored study on the importance of religion for college freshman in 1972, 1973 and 1974. He has served on the board of directors and as past president of both the Higher Education Consortium for Urban Affairs and for the Minnesota chapter of the Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights. Ahler intends to spend his newfound free time fishing and boating at his lake home.

Dr. Eric Jaede has taught in our Quantitative Methods and Computer Science Department for 21 years. He first studied mathematics and physics at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, where he received a B.S. in 1961. Originally from New York, Jaede left the East Coast to attend the University of Minnesota, and earned a Ph.D. there in 1966. He worked in private industry for such organizations as Honeywell, Control Data Corporation and Supervalu before he accepted an assistant professor position at St. Thomas in 1979. During his tenure at St. Thomas, Jaede has had a number of papers published in academic journals, and often served on panels at technology-related conferences and symposiums. He was tenured in 1984. In retirement, Jaede hopes to spend more time with his grandchildren, expand his consulting business and improve the quality of his reading list by working his way through the 100 best novels of the 20th century.