Former School Board Member, Conservation Activist Dies At 86

Jul 22, 2013

Robert Teater

Words of praise have been rolling in from many quarters for longtime public servant Robert Teater, who died Sunday at the age of 86.

Bob Teater, was a former National Guard commander, state director of Natural Resources and Columbus School board member is being remembered for a life spent in service to the people and the natural beauty of his adopted state.

After serving in the Army in Korea, the Kentucky native moved to Columbus in 1953 to attend graduate school at Ohio State, where he founded it’s first School of Natural Resources. In 1975 Governor Jim Rhodes tapped Teater to run the state Department of Natural Resources. He helped establish and expand some of the state’s most popular stateparks.

After an unsuccessful bid for the Republican nomination for governor in 1982, Teater formed a natural resources consulting firm, and was one of the driving forces behind the wildlife conservation center The Wilds, negotiating a deal with American Electric Power for 9K acres of land in eastern Ohio.

In 1985, Teater retired from the Ohio National Guard a two-star general, but didn’t stay retired long. He served 3 terms on the Columbus School Board, including 3 years as president. Teater has been inducted into six Ohio halls of fame, including those for agriculture, natural resources, the National Guard and veterans. He died Sunday from complications of Parkinson’s disease.