Thursday, October 15, 2009

HU Mourns the Loss of Science Dean

Dr. Douglas DePriest

 Hampton University mourns the loss of Dr. Douglas DePriest, acting dean of the HU School of Science. DePriest passed away on Oct. 12, at the age of 65.

“The Hampton University community is truly saddened by the passing of Dr. DePriest,” said HU President Dr. William R. Harvey.  “His diligent and heartfelt work as an administrator, scientist and mentor at his alma mater will be missed.”  

DePriest received a Bachelor’s of Science degree in mathematics from HU in 1966. He received the Master’s of Science degree in math education from the University of Tennessee and a Ph.D. in statistics from American University.  He returned to his “Home by the Sea” in 1999 as an associate professor in the Department of Mathematics. He served as assistant dean from 2005 until 2008 when he became acting dean of the School of Science. In his role as acting dean, he led the school in curricular, research, and service activities.

“Dr. DePriest’s leadership and friendship will be missed by faculty, students and staff in the School of Science,” said Michael Druitt, assistant to the dean in the School of Science. “We will continue to keep his family in our prayers.”

DePriest mentored many students and worked on projects focused on increasing the number of minorities and women in science and engineering.

“Over the years I was afforded the opportunity to learn from him, work with him, and be encouraged by him,” stated Ciara Brown a graduate student in the HU Department of Atmospheric and Planetary Sciences. “Dr. DePriest was a genuinely kind, warmhearted, and funny man who always knew how to brighten my day and subtlety bring me a word of correction! He pushed me to be more than average, but to be great. His presence will forever live on through the many lives he has touched."

DePriest was a devoted father and grandfather.  He leaves to cherish his memory his fianc√©, Dr. Linda Malone-Colon; daughter, Marcia DePriest Brown (Brian Brown); son Kraig DePriest (Monica DePriest) and granddaughters Kamile and Kallie DePriest. He was preceded in death by his son Delmar DePriest.

Services for DePriest will be held Oct. 21 at 11a.m. at St. Paul Baptist Church in Richmond, Va., the wake will be held Oct. 20, from 6:30-7:30 p.m. at the Laburnum Chapel in Richmond, Va.


  1. My husband, Mr. Brian Rainey and I would like to express our sincere sympathy for a great business man and leader for our Newport News Community.

    We provided flooring services for his complex in Newport News.

    I personally, am fortunate to have had the opportunity to speak with him on several occasions, one being during his illness, in which I prayed for him.

    Lynetta Rainey
    Rainman Installation Inc.

  2. Dr. DePriest was my favorite math teacher, I had him freshman year at HU for Calculus I in 2003. He brought me out of my shell in Math class when he encouraged students to goto the board and show the class how they worked out homework math problem for extra credit points. He always used to like how I signed my name after doing my problems, I always remember that. Now I am PhD student and still remember what I learned in his class. My prayers go out to his family.