Bernard Beatty

By | August 10, 2021

Bernard Lee Beatty died Wednesday, Aug. 4, 2021. He was born in Jackson, Ohio on Apr. 14, 1929. Bern graduated from The Ohio State University in 1951 and spent the next 23 years in the United States Air Force, retiring in 1974 as a Colonel after having served all over the world, including Southeast Asia during the Vietnam War, for which he was awarded the Bronze Star Medal. While overseas, he served as a tutor to the then-Crown Prince (now King) of Thailand. In his many Air Force years in Europe, he ran with the bulls in Pamplona, Spain.

Upon leaving the Air Force, he joined Wake Forest University in Winston-Salem, NC, where he taught in the Graduate School of Management until 2016. For several years of his time at Wake Forest, he awarded an annual full-expenses two-year Bern Beatty scholarship to “adventurous” applicants. The Bern Beatty Colloquium in the new Ferrell School of Business building, erected in 2013, was named for him. Also, alumni who remembered the rewarding times in his classrooms created a teaching fellowship in his name.

Dr. Beatty led many summer trips with students to study business practices in England, France, Central and Eastern Europe, Russia and Scandinavia. He also worked closely with the Central and Eastern European Management Development Association based in Bled, Slovenia, traveling throughout the region to advance the concept of using case studies in management education. He frequently responded to the Helsinki School of Business’s needs by teaching several times in MBA programs in Finland. Along the way, he spent many delightful summers with his children and grandchildren in ski-famous Seefeld in the Austrian Alps. He also wasted a huge amount of time conducting research in various British pubs, and in Munich he “brought down the house” (Hofbräuhaus), conducting the oompah band in a stirring version of “Ein Prosit.”

Dr. Beatty received an MBA, and later a DBA, from the Harvard University Business School. He also earned various professional designations, including CPA, CMA and CVA, and served on several business Boards of Directors. He co-founded the Certified MBA Program and The Accounting Oasis, an educational website. He has given presentations or short courses in North America, Europe and Asia. After retiring from Wake Forest, he created a consulting company for educational for educational seminars and acted as an advisor on Competence-Based Education with Western Governors University.

At home in Pinnacle, NC, since 1985, he was an ardent supporter of bluebird preservation and built many houses for them. Also at home, he established a friendly environment for hummingbirds. Some people called him “a good ol’ boy,” and others said he was “the worst-dressed ‘sumbitch’ in the Carolinas.”

Dr. Beatty married the former Elspeth “Beth” Irving in 1962 in London, England. In addition to his beloved wife of 58 years, he leaves three children: Michael (Leah) of Raleigh, NC, Lisa Mackenzie of Chapel Hill, NC, and Steven of Pinnacle, NC; as well as six grandchildren: Grayson, Ian, Sorrelle, Dexter, Elias and Chloe. He is also survived by his brother, Roger, of Wellston, Ohio.

A memorial celebration of his life will be held at a later date. In lieu of flowers, please consider donating to The Salvation Army and The Bike Box Project (