May 30, 2013
Communications and Marketing
Richard Hechtl, associate professor emeritus and former chair of the psychology department, died Tuesday, May 28 at the age of 81.
Hechtl's tenure on the hilltop began in 1969, when he joined the faculty as a full-time member, teaching psychology in the criminal justice department. In addition to his teaching responsibilities, Hechtl was tasked with developing a psychology curriculum with the goal of establishing a psychology major.
In 1975, that purpose was achieved, as Hechtl became the first chair of the newly established psychology department. He retired in 1999, after 30 years of teaching.
Throughout his career, Hechtl served the college community in various capacities, as a member of the Faculty Senate and countless committees and a major force behind establishing the college's jazz band.
Hechtl remained an active member of the college community after retirement. In recognition of his role, at the end of each academic year, the psychology department presents a graduating senior with the Richard F. Hechtl Award. It recognizes a psychology major's accomplishments in scholarship and in demonstrating Christian values.
Hechtl earned his bachelor's degree in psychology from Bates College in Lewiston, Maine, and his master's in psychology from the University of New Hampshire.
Prior to teaching at Saint Anselm, he worked at the N.H. Youth Development Center as a clinical psychologist. He also served as psychologist at the N.H. State Prison and consultant to the National Institute of Corrections. He lectured at other colleges and universities throughout his career and was involved in marriage preparation classes through the Diocese of Manchester.
Hechtl leaves behind wife, Elaine, and children Patricia (Hechtl) Kilar '77, Eric Hechtl '87 and Tina Hechtl -Langley '82 and '83.
Professor Hechtl will be remembered for his significant contributions to the college. A memorial service is being planned for this summer; information on that event is forthcoming.