President Daniele Struppa shared the following message with the Chapman Family on August 6, 2021:

It is with deep sadness that I announce the loss of one of our most beloved alumni, Carl Hill ’78. An active Chapman Family volunteer who demonstrated the utmost integrity, Carl was full of passion for intellectual pursuits and carried an incomparable spirit for his alma mater. He passed away on August 5, 2021, at the age of 64. I encourage you to pause for a moment to remember and honor his memory.

Carl Hill was the embodiment of steadfast commitment and leadership. His relationship with Chapman extended more than 40 years, during which he remained an active and generous member of his alma mater. Inspiring, engaged and dedicated are just a few of the words that come to mind when I think of him. He was a member of the Chapman community who led by example, and his long relationship with Chapman was highlighted by numerous initiatives and acts of generosity.

In 1975, when Carl was a freshman at Chapman, he contributed to Chapman’s first-ever fundraising campaign. This first gift was indicative of an individual ready to give back and foreshadowed the generous legacy that he would cement at Chapman. To date, Carl’s philanthropic involvement has influenced a broad range of priorities at the university. He annually gave to the Chapman Fund and regularly supported Chapman Celebrates, athletics and many capital campaigns for new construction projects.

However, he was not one to stand on the sidelines. He took a hands-on approach to enhance the opportunities at Chapman, joining several committees to help steer new programs. Over the last decade, Carl had been active with Chapman academics such as Donna Ford Attallah College of Educational Studies, Crean College of Health and Behavioral Sciences and Wilkinson College of Arts, Humanities, and Social Sciences. He made a point to attend key university events and established personal connections with deans, administrators, faculty members and students.

A recent initiative that he helped bring to fruition is the Chapman Transfer Admission Guarantee (C-TAG) for Future Educators. This program within Attallah College creates a bridge to Chapman for future elementary and special education teachers from Santa Ana College and Santiago Canyon College. Carl worked to see this guaranteed admission program for Attallah College’s integrated educational studies major implemented by serving on the advisory committee that established the conceptual framework for the strategic partnership for C-TAG with Santa Ana College.

Of particular importance to Carl, and what defined his commitment to Chapman, was alumni engagement. Since graduating, he served for more than a decade on the Alumni Association Board of Directors, which included two terms as president, 1995-1996 and 1999-2001. Before his unexpected passing, he actively served on the Alumni Association’s Past Presidents Advisory Council, which was established in 2018.

As a unique part of his dedication to strengthening the Chapman connection for other alumni, Carl named the “Carl R. Hill ’78 Family Room” within Elliott Alumni House. He specifically chose the alumni house because he believed the Chapman Experience continues to resonate and shape the lives of alumni long after graduation. In order to accomplish his philanthropic goals, Carlincluded an additional commitment to Elliott Alumni House through his living trust.

Carl Hill demonstrated a lifetime commitment to Chapman University. His advocation for legacy planning and decision to establish a legacy gift, the Carl R. Hill ’78 Endowed Opportunity Fund, exemplify his permanent belief and bond to the university. And we, as an institution, are incredibly honored to carry forward his memory and spirit through his endowment.

Carl Hill was an incomparable asset to any community he held close. My thoughts are with his family and everyone who knew him. To be notified of a memorial service or make a gift in his memory, contact the Office of Legacy Planning at or (714) 516-6150.