Harold Daniel Stillwell, Ph.D.



Dr. Richard D. Howe, “Harold Daniel Stillwell, Ph.D.,” Appalachian State University Libraries Digital Collections, accessed April 22, 2024, https://omeka.library.appstate.edu/items/show/48125.

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Harold Daniel Stillwell, Ph.D.


Appalachian State University
Universities and colleges--Faculty


Dr. Richard D. Howe




Biographical sketches


Boone (N.C.)

Spatial Coverage


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Professor Emeritus

Biographical Text

Professor Emeritus of Geography and Planning Daniel Stillwell (March 21, 1931-) was born in Staten Island, New York. He received his Bachelor of Science and Master of Forestry degrees at Duke University, North Carolina (1948-54). He continued his studies at Oregon State University in Corvallis and Michigan State University in East Lansing and earned a Ph.D. degree in geography from Michigan State in 1961. From 1954 to 1957, Stillwell was employed by the Oregon Forest Research Center, where he was involved in wood technology research. He was awarded a nine-month grant to study national park management in Brazil in 1959. Following that period, he was employed by Eastern Michigan University in Ypsilanti (1960-61), the University of Texas in Austin (1961-62), and East Carolina University in Greenville (1962-71), where he taught geography. His appointment to Appalachian State University came in September 1971. Dr. Stillwell helped to develop an audio tutorial course in introductory physical geography, which was funded by a Ford Foundation grant. He organized a distinguished speaker series for the department (1985-93) and directed the map library from 1971 to 1993. He served on several committees, including the departmental graduate, personnel, and equipment committees, as well as the Committee on High Mountain Geoecology, International Geographical Union. Dr. Stillwell's research interest involved local environmental impacts of mountain resort development, as well as impacts of avalanche hazards in Tyrol, Austria, and South Island, New Zealand. He presented papers to the International Geographical Congress in Moscow, Union of Soviet Socialist Republics ("Treeline in Highlands of Western United States"); in Bern, Switzerland ("A Predictive Model of Avalanche Behavior in Austrian Tyrol"); in Christchurch, New Zealand ("Zoning for Avalanche Hazards"); and in Sydney, Australia ("Natural Hazards of Latin America"). Stillwell's publications include a book, North Carolina: People and Environments (coauthored); Boone, North Carolina Region: Outdoor Recreation Map and Guide; Navigable Waterways of North Carolina (co-authored); and chapters in the Encyclopedia of Southern History and in the North Carolina Atlas. Among Stillwell's professional journal articles are "National Parks of Brazil: A Study in Recreational Geography" (in Annals of the Association of American Geographers), "Treeline in Highlands of Western United States" (in International Geography) "Natural Hazards and Disasters in Latin America" (in International Journal of Hazards Research), and "Global Distortion" (in Mercator's World). Dr. Stillwell's professional affiliations have included the Association of American Geographers, both national and southeastern regional levels; the National Council for Geographic Education; the North Carolina Geographical Society; Sigma Xi, an honorary science fraternity of Gamma Theta Upsilon; and the International Map Trade Association. Dr. Stillwell's wife, the former Jean Esval, is from Huntington, New York. She earned her B.A. degree at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill and afterwards worked for R.H. Macy's and for G.B. Buck, a consulting actuary in New York City. She was also a public relations assistant for Blue Cross/Blue Shield in Durham, North Carolina. Jean owned and operated Nordic House in Foscoe and Blue Planet Map Company in Boone (sold in 1998). The Stillwells formed the Blue Planet Publishing Company in 1996 and produced the "Boone Region Outdoor Recreation Map and Guide" (third edition in 2007). The Stillwells have two daughters: Judy and Laura. Judy, who earned her B.S. degree in aviation management from Auburn University, Auburn, Alabama, was a transportation analyst for the Federal Aviation Administration in Washington, District of Columbia. She is married to Claude Courbois, a research analyst for NASDAC and son of Appalachian State University professor Jean-Pierre Courbois. Judy and Claude have a daughter and a son. Laura earned her B.A. degree in economics at Duke University, Durham, North Carolina, and her M.B.A. degree at Emory University, Atlanta, Georgia; she was a consultant with Deloitte and Touche in Cleveland, Ohio. Laura is married to Charles Haag, a lawyer in Dallas, Texas. They have two daughters and one son. Stillwell retired from Appalachian State University in July 199S and he was awarded the rank of professor emeritus at that time. He has many hobbies, including snow skiing (he has been teaching in the Sugar Mountain Ski School since 1978), hiking and climbing, swimming, tennis, photography, gardening, and travel (Europe, Thailand, Mexico, Hawaii, Australia, New Zealand, Alaska, western Canada, Costa Rica, Panama, Chile, Argentina, and the Caribbean). He also has sung in a barbershop quartet since 1977. During his retirement, until 1998, Stillwell contributed geographic expertise at the Blue Planet Map Company. He has been an active member of the Boone Unitarian Universalist Fellowship and numerous environmental groups since moving to Boone. Source: Appalachian State University files and personal correspondence. -Dr. Richard D. Howe

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