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Honoring the Life of Drake Professor Dr. Robert Mason

Updated: May 14

On November 15, 2017, KCC-JEE lost one of its long time board members, Rob Mason, after a brief illness. Rob joined KCC-JEE in the fall of 2005 and over the years served as chair of the Drake Professorship and as co-president with Dave Therkelsen in 2012. Rob was an important presence on the KCC-JEE board for his belief in international educational exchange, his deep commitment to student learning, and for his genial, kind spirited leadership on the Board. He was also a friend whom we will miss. The Rob Mason Memorial Fund has been established to support the programs that were closest to his heart.

More about Rob's Life and Work

During the 2004-05 academic year, Rob was the Bryant Drake Guest Professorship in the Department of Biosphere Sciences at Kobe College, after which he was invited to serve on the Board. While on the Board, Rob chaired the Bryant Drake professorship committee, among his other contributions. Rob received his BA degree in Geography and Environmental Studies at the University of Buffalo in 1977, his MA in Geography and Environmental Studies from the University of Toronto in 1979, and received his PhD in Geography from Rutgers University in 1986.


He joined Temple’s Department of Geography and Urban Studies in 1986 and taught at Temple University Japan in Tokyo from 1993-1997. After returning to Temple’s main campus in Philadelphia, he became director of the new program in Environmental Studies. Most recently, Rob taught at Temple Rome in 2016. His latest book is Collaborative Land Use Management: The Quieter Revolution in Place-Based Planning (2008), and he wrote about metropolitan growth management, greenline parks, conservation land trusts, and national park management. He was also interested in the evolving role of Japan’s citizen environmental organizations at the national level, metropolitan land use and sprawl issues in China, and management of Japan’s Shirakami Sanchi World Heritage Area.

Rob will be greatly missed, and his achievements remembered always.

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