Molnar died of a heart attack while bike riding in California. He was 61. Molnar served as the chief academic officer for the College of Creative Studies (CCS) for eleven years, first as Dean of the College and more recently as Provost. He oversaw the College’s faculty, curriculum, and academic resources. He led the development of new degree and educational programs and was vital in the creation of the College’s first Master of Fine Arts programs.
Molnar’s experience and relationships with the global automotive industry gave him unique insights into the evolving world of automotive design and helped to propel CCS’s Transportation Design degree programs to a world leadership position.
He was an admired figure in the design community and a frequent speaker at design conferences and universities around the world. Molnar brought a diverse international perspective to the academic activities of the College.
Born in Hungary and raised in Australia, he joined CCS in 2001. He previously served as Design Director for Patagonia, the outdoor clothing manufacturer, and as Director of Operations at the renowned design consulting firm Hauser Inc.
He also had a long association with the Art Center College of Design in Pasadena, CA, as faculty member, administrator and a graduate student, including service as Director of Education at the school’s campus in Vevey, Switzerland.
He also served as the Field Officer/New South Wales Director of the Industrial Design Council of Australia – Sydney. Molnar earned a Bachelor’s degree from the National Art School in Sydney, and a Master of Fine Arts degree from Art Center College of Design.
In a message to Trustees, faculty and staff, Richard L. Rogers, President of the College for Creative Studies said, “Imre Molnar has been a remarkable leader whose accomplishments in his eleven years at the College are huge. For me, it was a personal privilege and pleasure to have worked so closely with him. I admired his values, his intelligence, his talent, his determination, and his passionate devotion to his family and the College. He leaves a great void.”