Grant Elementary School (File photo)

Beloved retired Lincoln Middle School math teacher, Dr. Steve Marcy passed away unexpectedly at the age of 77 on Jan. 25, 2023. He was born on April 4, 1945.

Steve leaves behind his wife Janis, his sister Jan Rhue, four children, Matt, Jennifer, Jasmina and Andy, along with five grandchildren, two great grandchildren.

Steve was first hired by SMMUSD in 1971 as a math teacher at Lincoln Middle School in the Santa Monica-Malibu Unified School District (SMMUSD), where he taught until 2006. He retired in 2007. He began writing mathematics enrichment materials in 1973 and subsequently published eight binders of classroom activities that are now used nationwide. Steve was awarded a Ph.D. in educational psychology from UCLA in 1978. Steve’s wife, Janis, is a retired SMMUSD high school counselor.

SMMUSD Interim Superintendent Dr. Mark Kelly, also a math teacher in his early career, recalls utilizing Steve’s materials in math classes. “Steve had a tremendously positive impact on students over his 36 years at Lincoln Middle School. He also inspired teachers throughout the district and beyond.” said Dr. Kelly.

Steve is also well known in the community as the Scoutmaster of Boy Scout Troop 2 in Santa Monica since 1989. Steve was a role model for hundreds of students and scouts, always working to support and produce responsible citizens for the community, nation, and world.

Steve was honored by the Santa Monica Chamber of Commerce as an inspirational hero in 2013 and reflected on his work as a role model for that honor. “As both a teacher and a Scoutmaster, I was thrust into the position of role model. In both contexts, children can be strongly influenced by the example you set. You hope to inspire them by that example. There are many teachable moments to discuss values such as kindness, integrity, and moral courage. You can teach children that they have the power to do something great.”

“Steve brought a wonderful sense of fun and adventure into his mathematics classroom and was a pioneer in addressing engagement and joy in math learning for all students!” said Rosa Serratore, current SMMUSD math and science coordinator. “Steve inspired so many of us as teachers and leaders by anchoring his math department’s efforts with doing math together and keeping us current with readings and research.”

Steve grew up in Virginia where he attended the College of William and Mary, serving in several leadership roles including as class president. His first teaching job was in Azusa In 1969, then three years later, came to Lincoln Middle School.

“Dr. Marcy was an exceptional man,” said former SMMUSD Board Member Senator Ben Allen, who was one of Dr. Marcy’s students, a Troop 2 Eagle Scout, and is friends with his children. “He devoted his life to making young people’s lives better, and taught so much to so many through the power of his example — his integrity, his work ethic, good humor, tenacity, and big heart. He was a great teacher — fun, witty, substantive, and engaging. And his 40-year leadership at the helm of the Troop made such a difference for so many young men in our community — building a love for the outdoors, self-sufficiency, citizenship, and the quest for an ethical and meaningful life. Dr. Marcy was at the heart of all that made the Troop 2 experience so great, and like so many of my friends and peers, I have carried lessons he left with me into my life and career. I know that I speak on behalf of so many people in the LMS, scouting, and broader Santa Monica communities when I say how devastated we were by the news of his untimely passing. We will miss you terribly Dr. Marcy.”

The family has planned a memorial for him on Saturday, Feb. 11, 2023 at 11 a.m. at the Lincoln Middle School auditorium, 1501 California Avenue, Santa Monica.

Cards and memories may be shared with Janis Marcy, 3242 Stoner Ave. Los Angeles, CA 90066.

Donations in Steve’s memory may be made to: Sierra Club, Planned Parenthood, ACLU, Santa Monica Boy Scout Troop 2.

The Board of Education will open the Feb. 2, 2023 school board meeting in honor of Dr. Steve Marcy. The meeting starts at 5:30 p.m. and can be viewed on YouTube:

Steve’s daughter Jenny shared on behalf of the family, “Please share our gratitude with the school board for taking the time to acknowledge all that my dad gave to the community for so many decades. He loved Lincoln, the people he worked with, and the kids he taught, and on many occasions, he told me how lucky he felt to have landed there for his career.”

“Steve’s family, friends, students and scouts, are in our thoughts and prayers during this time of mourning,” said Dr. Kelly.

Submitted by Gail Pinsker, SMMUSD Community & Public Relations Officer