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John Cochran, R.I.P.


John P. Cochran, Senior Fellow at the Mises Institute, expert on the Fed and monetary policy, and co-author (with Fred Glahe) of The Hayek-Keynes Debate: Lessons for Current Business Cycle Research, (reviewed in QJAE here) passed away last week. He was 69.  John was emeritus dean of the Business School and emeritus professor of economics at Metropolitan State University of Denver. He also served on the editorial board of the Quarterly Journal of Austrian Economics

Cochran completed his doctoral dissertation at the University of Colorado under Fred Glahe, an Austrian economist at the University of Colorado for many years. John also was a key figure in bringing in two new Austrian economists to teach at Metropolitan State University of Denver during his tenure: Alexandre Padilla and Nicolás Cachanosky

He was writing for Mises Daily, QJAE, and Mises Wire up until the very end, usually on the topic of monetary policy, money, and central banks. He has lectured on the topic of Keynesianism as neo-mercantilism

In 2012 he testified before the House Subcommittee on Monetary Policy and Technology at the request of Ron Paul. (Video.)

For more, see his 2014 interview in The Free Market, and his Faculty Spotlight in which he wrote: 

My only words of advice, not wisdom, is do your work so that you not only advance Austrian economics, but so your results make Austrian economics synonymous with good economics.

John Cochran's brother Jerry Cochran also sends along this more detailed and personal obituary:

John Paul Cochran passed away peacefully on May 1, 2015, at his home with his wife after a two year battle with ocular melanoma. He is survived by his wife Ann, stepson Terry, mother Betty (Phoenix, Arizona), brothers Jerry (Phoenix, a twin) and Mark (Arkansas), two step grandchildren, three step great grandchildren, and four nieces and nephews.

He was born in Ft. Collins, Colorado on December 22, 1949, but grew up in Phoenix, Arizona. He graduated from West Phoenix High School in 1968, where he excelled academically and played on the baseball team making the all city academic team as a catcher. He then went to the University of Arizona and, much to his parents’ consternation, quit six hours short of his systems engineering degree to go teach and fight karate. He worked as a karate instructor in Globe, Arizona, El Paso, Texas, and then was transferred to Denver, Colorado. He ultimately obtained a third degree black belt in Chinese Kenpo karate.

While in Denver, he opened his own studio and through his teaching met his wife Ann, the love his life. They married in 1977 and were married 37 years.

In 1976, he took advantage of the opportunity provided by Metropolitan State University in Denver, which he affectionately called “Metro State,” and returned to college where professors Jerry Stone and Ralph Byrns introduced him to the second love of his life – “economics.” He received his BA in economics in 1978, followed by his masters in economics in 1981, and his PHD in economics in 1985 from the University of Colorado. He began teaching economics at Metropolitan State in 1981 and did brief guest stints teaching at the University of Colorado and Regis University. He spent the full measure of his professional/academic career at Metropolitan State where he became first the chair of the economics department, and then the dean of the business school where he retired in 2011. During his academic career he published books, work books, and numerous articles on economics. He was also invited to testify before Congress and was a guest lecturer at the Reagan Ranch.

Through his economics studies, he became involved with the third love of his life, the Mises Institute (www.mises.org, where many of his articles and publications can be found), that promotes the Austrian school of economics.

He was not all work and no play. He lived in Parker for many years and became involved with the fourth love of his life – Shar Pei dogs. He and Ann, through his trade name, SiFu Kennels, raised and showed Shar Peis and produced many champions.

They left Parker in 2001 to be closer to work and moved to Centennial, where he lived on a cul-de-sac with many wonderful neighbors. After retirement, he and Ann enjoyed several years of traveling and John writing and guest lecturing.

The cancer hit in spring 2013. He battled valiantly with a great group of professionals and continued to write until the very end. He was grateful for his family and the wonderful group of colleagues and friends he had during his lifetime.

Services were private with the family. In lieu of flowers, donations to Metropolitan State University of Denver, College of Business Scholarship Fund in his name would be appreciated so others might follow in his footsteps. Donations can sent to: College of Business Scholarship Fund, c/o MSU Denver Foundation, PO Box 17971, Denver, CO 80217.


Contact Ryan McMaken

Ryan McMaken (@ryanmcmaken) is executive editor at the Mises Institute. Send him your article submissions for the Mises Wire and Power and Market, but read article guidelines first. Ryan has a bachelor's degree in economics and a master's degree in public policy, finance, and international relations from the University of Colorado. He was a housing economist for the State of Colorado. He is the author of Breaking Away: The Case of Secession, Radical Decentralization, and Smaller Polities and Commie Cowboys: The Bourgeoisie and the Nation-State in the Western Genre.

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