Belleville education and counseling chairman dies unexpectedly

Steve Suess played prominent roles in community organizations including the YMCA, St. Paul’s Foundation, the St. Clair County Historical Society and the Rotary Club of St. Clair County. -- photo courtesy of

UPDATED July 10, 2017 — The Education and Counseling Division chairman at Lindenwood University-Belleville died unexpectedly June 27 while he was on vacation in Michigan with his family.

Steve Suess was 67.

According to a Lindenwood press release, Suess (pronounced “cease”) came to Lindenwood Belleville in 2008 after a long career in school administration and teaching in the St. Louis metropolitan area.

Lindenwood-Belleville President Brett Barger said in the release that Suess helped shape both the spirit and educational programs of the university.

“His ever present smile and good nature made every encounter in the hallways, cafeteria, or in meetings a pleasant one,” Barger said. “Steve’s positive leadership style and commitment to students has become a hallmark of his division and the campus.”

A memorial service took place at St. Paul United Church of Christ in Belleville at 1 p.m. on Sunday, July 9. According to an obituary from Kurrus Funeral Home, memorials may be made to the St. Paul UCC Fine Arts Fund, St. Paul Senior Community Foundation, or the Signal Hill Education Foundation.

Suess held two masters degrees from Southern Illinois University-Edwardsville and a doctorate in education from St. Louis University.

Beyond his career, Suess held several leadership roles across St. Louis, including past president at the Rotary Club of St. Clair West, past president of the Kiwanis Club of Tesson Heights, and the chair of the Education Committee of the Belleville Chamber of Commerce, according to his obituary.

The obituary noted that Suess had a lifelong love of playing the piano, gardening in his yard and was fond of his hosta garden.

He leaves behind his wife, Barbara Jean, a daughter, Megan Selck, a son, Steven Suess, and several grandchildren.


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