Bereavement Notice

Mark Rigstad, Department of Philosophy

Highly regarded as an exceptional intructor and mentor, Dr. Rigstad was also highly respected for his exceptional scholarhship in the area of contemporary political ethics.

Mark Rigstad, January, 2024, Philosophy

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Mark RigstadIt is with deep sadness that I inform you of the death of Dr. Mark Allen Rigstad, who passed away on January 17, 2024. Dr. Rigstad joined the Oakland University community on August 15, 2002, in the Department of Philosophy, where he served until his passing. During his tenure he served as Department Chair, University Senator and the Director of the Center for Ethics.

A graduate of the University of Utah and The Johns Hopkins University, Dr Rigstad was highly engaged at OU, having led many committees and special initiatives. He was also well known for helping to shape the careers of many of his colleagues and two generations of college students through both instruction and mentorship.

Dr. Rigstad was particularly proud of his role as coach of more than a dozen of OU’s Ethics Bowl teams, many of which he led to win regional championships and to compete for national titles. Our respected colleague was also known for innovative research into the ethical dimensions of contemporary political questions about war, terrorism, rebellion and human rights.

Dr. Rigstad developed a reputation for honesty, loyalty and trust, often being called upon for advice, a listening and compassionate ear, a helping hand or a good laugh. He was also described as a renaissance man, pursuing interests in surfing, reading, art, music of all genres, traveling, eating good food and hiking.

A Celebration of Life will be held on Saturday, February 17, 2024 from 1-3 p.m. at Aretha’s Jazz Café at The Music Hall Center for the Performing Arts located at 350 Madison Street, Detroit, Michigan. To view the online obituary and to share your condolences, please visit the A.J. Desmond & Sons Funeral Directors website.

On behalf of the entire university community, we extend our heartfelt condolences to the
Rigstad family and friends during this very difficult time.



Ora Hirsch Pescovitz, M.D.

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