Emory Report
August 30, 2004
Volume 57, Number 02


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August 30, 2004
Halle Institute namesake Claus Halle dies at 77

By Michael Terrazas

Claus Halle, former Coca-Cola executive and generous University benefactor, died on Sunday, Aug. 22. He was 77.

Halle, along with his wife, Marianne, provided the support for the Claus M. Halle Institute for Global Learning, which officially opened in October 1997. He was a vocal proponent of enhancing international relations, especially between the United States and Germany, his home country. In 2000, Emory bestowed an honorary degree upon him.

“I feel very fortunate to have had Claus as a mentor and a friend since we met in 2002, and to have had the chance this summer to get his input for the new initiatives underway at the Halle Institute,” said Vice Provost International Affairs Holli Semetko, who is director of the institute. “Clause and the board of the Halle Foundation provided support for a major research project we have undertaken in Europe this year, reflecting his deep commitment to international understanding. His passion for people, democracy, diplomacy and trade can be seen in the work of the Halle Institute, and we will miss him very much.”

In 1950, Halle joined the Coca-Cola Company in Germany as a trainee. He was named area manager for central Europe in 1965 and president of Coca-Cola Europe in 1970. By 1979, Halle was vice-chair of the company with responsibilities for operations in Europe and Africa.

Following his retirement from Coca-Cola in 1989, Halle served on the boards of such organizations as the Carter Center, the Southern Center for International Studies and the Woodruff Arts Center.

“I had the good fortune of working for Claus early in my career,” said Coca-Cola Chairman and CEO Neville Isdell in a statement to Coke employees worldwide. “He was a great mentor and, more importantly, a dear friend. He was a true globalist with a deep understanding of every country in which we operate. His commitment to everything he did was second to none, and he was always a gentleman with a wonderfully dry sense of humor. We are all poorer for his passing.”

A memorial service was held Wednesday, Aug. 25, at 11 a.m. at Glenn Memorial. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be sent to the Oglethorpe Exchange Program, Oglethorpe University, 4484 Peachtree Road, Atlanta, 30319, or to International University Bremen Foundation of America, 316 Mid Valley Center No. 281, Carmel, Calif., 93923-8516.