Elon Medallion recipient Carole Chase passes away

Chase served as a faculty member in the Department of Religious Studies for 25 years and was awarded the Elon Medallion in 2002.

The Rev. Carole Frederica Chase, an Elon Medallion recipient who taught in the Department of Religious Studies for 25 years, has died at the age of 83.

Chase joined the Elon community in 1976 as a professor of religious studies and became an ordained minister in the Presbyterian Church USA. Chase continued to serve Elon until her retirement in 2001, when she was named professor emerita. In 2002 Chase was awarded the Elon Medallion, the university’s highest honor, for her decades of meritorious service to the Elon community.

Chase created the Constant and Frederica Chase scholarship for non-traditional students at Elon, in honor of her parents, who predeceased her. Chase endowed the Outstanding Religion Scholar Award, which is given to the rising senior, selected by Elon Religious Studies faculty, who has done outstanding work in Religious Studies courses. Chase also started the endowment for the Smith-Chase Lecture in Religious Studies, which hosted its inaugural lecture in 2019.

Then-President Leo M. Lambert awards the Elon Medallion to Chase in 2002.

Regarded as a leader in her field, she developed and taught many interdisciplinary courses in global studies, environmental ethics, and women’s and gender studies. She was an early proponent of the experiential learning model at Elon, requiring internships of her students and leading study abroad courses. A prolific writer, Chase published numerous poems, articles and reviews. She also published scholarly works about noted author Madeleine L’Engle, a close personal friend.

Chase was predeceased by her brother, John Peabody Chase (Jeanne) in 2019. She is survived by her brother, Constant Woodman Chase III (Armenia), Conover, NC, her sister-in-law, Jeanne Chase, Tucson, AZ, nephews, Michael Chase (Ashley), Raleigh, NC and David Chase, Tallahassee, FL, two nieces, Dr. Stephanie Chase Holman (Alan), Conover, NC, and Patricia Chase Brown, Tucson, AZ, three great-nieces, Sydney Chase, Isla Holman and Mila Holman, and two great-nephews, Kyle Chase and Henry Holman. In addition, Carole leaves her loyal friends that she cherished: Lou Wallace (housemate), Pam Brumbaugh, Debby Wall, Carolyn Toben, Christine Mallia, Ann Wilkinson and Kel Peterson.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, a private family celebration of life will be held later.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Constant W. & Frederica Chase Scholarship Fund at Elon University – Office of Advancement, 2600 Campus Box, Elon, NC, 27244.

Read the Rev. Carole Frederica Chase’s full obituary.