Dr. Paul W. Hoffman, 90, McPherson College president from 1976 to 1996, passed away on September 30, 2022, in McPherson, Kan. Serving as the college’s 11th president, Dr. Hoffman provided sound financial and organizational leadership overseeing three successful fundraising campaigns, several buildings and grounds projects, and providing mentorship for generations of staff and students.
“Dr. Hoffman was a mentor and friend to many who attended or worked at McPherson College during his tenure,” said McPherson College President Michael Schneider. “His 20-year career at McPherson College was filled with many accomplishments and his service to the college and Church of the Brethren is unprecedented. He offered me great support in my role at the college.”
A memorial service will be held at 2 p.m. on Saturday, October 8, at McPherson Church of the Brethren. The family will receive friends at the Stockham Family Funeral Home in McPherson on Friday, October 7, from 5 to 7 p.m.
Dr. Hoffman obtained degrees from Manchester College, Bethany Seminary, University of Michigan, and Purdue University. He spent his life in service and was known as a pastor, educator, administrator, philosopher, theologian, counselor, pilot, farmer, athlete, and coach.
Before coming to McPherson College, Dr. Hoffman served as a pastor for the Church of the Brethren and was dean of students at Manchester University for 14 years. In 1976, he moved to McPherson to serve as president of the college. He had the longest tenure of any sitting college or university president in Kansas at the time of his retirement. The Dr. Paul Hoffman Student Union at McPherson College was named in his honor in 1998.
He is survived by his wife, Joanna Begerow Hoffman of McPherson; son-in-law, John Wagoner, McPherson; son Dan and Dawn (Robbins) Hoffman, McPherson; son John and Sandra (Sharp) Hoffman, McPherson; son, Jim and Lisa (Lee) Hoffman, McPherson; a sister, Elizabeth Bauer, North Manchester, Ind.; 12 grandchildren; and 19 great-grandchildren.
Memorials can be made to the Joanna and Paul Hoffman Scholarship Fund at McPherson College in care of Stockham Family Funeral Home in McPherson.