James Dahler

Beloved, award-winning 36-year Webb Schools math instructor

James Dahler, The Webb Schools’ longest-tenured teacher, died February 2 at the age of 66.

Mr. Dahler grew up in Pennsylvania and earned a B.S. in chemistry with a minor in mathematics from St. Francis College in Loretto, PA. He was an educator for 42 years, with 36 of those years at Webb.

Mr. Dahler dedicated his life to The Webb Schools as a much-beloved math teacher, impacting countless students with his passion for mathematics and his innovative teaching methods. He was instrumental in shaping the curriculum for the honors precalculus and advanced studies linear algebra courses.

In addition to teaching at Webb, he served in many other roles, including dorm head, advisor, and varsity coach for tennis and volleyball. Mr. Dahler received several awards for his teaching excellence, including the Perry Award and the Jean E. Miller Excellence in Teaching Award. He was also named “An exemplary AP teacher” by the College Board.

“Beyond his professional accomplishments, Mr. Dahler was a cherished friend and mentor to many students and fellow Webb employees,” his colleagues wrote. “His warmth, kindness, and genuine care for others endeared him to the entire school community. He was also known for his culinary talents, delighting us all with his exceptional cooking and baking skills. Mr. Dahler’s legacy goes far beyond the classroom, and he will be deeply missed by all whose lives he touched.”

Mr. Dahler was preceded in death by his parents, Ralph and Hilda Dahler; sisters Darla Ellinger and Marilys Jean Dahler; and brother, Ralph Dahler.

He is survived by his sisters Erma Palenik, Beverly Moore, and Virginia Fugate; and by many nieces, nephews, grandnieces, and grandnephews.

“He was beloved by his family and friends alike,” his colleagues added.

A celebration of his life is currently in the planning.

“Our hearts go out to his family and loved ones during this time of profound loss,” his Webb colleague wrote.

The Jim Dahler Fund for Faculty Excellence has been established at The Webb Schools. Donations in his memory are welcome and appreciated. More information is at webb.org/support.


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