Remembering Teng-Kee Tan



Teng-Kee Tan, Ph.D, passed away in the presence of his family at his home in Kingston, Washington. Tan served as Dean of the Henry W. Bloch School of Management from 2009 to 2013. During his tenure, he focused on growth in faculty, secured a new building through private funding and invigorated the school’s brand in the community, region and nation.

Tan had numerous successes while serving at Bloch. He served as a catalyst for the success of the school’s new strategic plan and rebranding as the Henry W. Bloch School of Management. This was the outcome of Tan’s twin pillars philosophy, an approach that successfully linked its for-profit and not-for-profit sectors.

While serving as dean, Tan was instrumental in helping to obtain the largest gift in UMKC history – $32 million from the school’s namesake, Henry W. Bloch, to build the Henry W. Bloch Executive Hall for Entrepreneurship and Innovation.

Under his leadership, with assistance from a strong and dedicated team of associates, he built and expanded Bloch’s faculty. He championed recruiting faculty with strong teaching, research, and community partnership skills. He also empowered faculty to use entrepreneurial spirit to grow their programs to meet business needs in the community, region and nation.

Tan earned a Bachelor of Commerce at Nanyang University, an M.B.A. at the Kellogg School of Management, Northwestern University in 1988, and his Ph.D. at the Judge Institute of Management at the University of Cambridge in 2005. Before becoming Dean at the Bloch School, Tan served as the Director of the Nanyang Technopreneurship Center at the Nanyang Technological University (NTU), in the Republic of Singapore.

In addition to his academic achievements, Tan spent 18 years at multi-national corporations in Asia and North America in senior corporate positions, including leadership roles at Electrolux AB, Sweden, and Sunbeam Corporation (USA). Prior to his university career, Tan was an entrepreneur for nine years, traveling and conducting businesses in Asia, Australia, Europe, South America, Canada and the USA.

Tan was born in Malaysia. He leaves behind his wife, Hai-Mee, and two adult children, Yung-Hern Tan and Sue Tan Toyofuku.

A simple funeral service will be held at the Stone Chapel in Poulsbo, Washington on Thursday afternoon May 14.  In lieu of flowers, friends can send a donation in memory of Dr. Teng-Kee Tan to the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network or the Seattle Cancer Care Alliance.