Cover photo for Edna Louise Steinman's Obituary
Edna Louise Steinman Profile Photo
1930 Edna 2011

Edna Louise Steinman

February 27, 1930 — January 1, 2011

As a retiree, 80-year-old Edna Steinman was busier than many people are in their work lives. She volunteered with the American Association of University Women, Zonta International and her church. She served 12 years on the San Gorgonio Girl Scout Council, helped establish a library at Orangewood Continuation School in Redlands and served on the San Bernardino County grand jury. She wrote and edited newsletters for her service groups, acted as parliamentarian for several and ushered at community theater. One day when a friend came to visit, Steinman had four service-group meetings the same afternoon. "How are you going to do it all?" asked the friend, Grace Hart, worried that Steinman was overextended. But Steinman kept going, even with a stubborn cold and a bum knee last summer. "I couldn't have kept up with her," said Hart, her friend of 57 years. Steinman passed away Jan. 1 in Redlands. Her death leaves a big hole in the service club community, said Linda Derebery, a member of Redlands Zonta, a group dedicated to advancing the status of women. "Everyone in our organization called her our go-to gal," Derebery said. "If we didn't know how to do something, we'd go to Edna." Among her significant accomplishments: launching AAUW's Math-Science Conference for 8th Grade Girls, attended by 800 annually. I met Steinman soon after I came to the Inland area in 1986. She was director of public affairs at Cal State San Bernardino, where she worked for 21 years until retiring in 1989. She struck me as a gentle soul with a sharp mind, a sturdy work ethic and a love for the demands of writing and editing. That impression was borne out by longtime friends and co-workers. "She really taught me a lot about writing for publication," said Jill DeRoche, her assistant at Cal State in the 1970s. "She was a very good teacher ... very patient, very particular." "She was so knowledgeable," said Pat Wolff, her assistant in the early 1980s. "She always stressed ... to be as professional as (you) could be." "Anything that needed to be written, she'd help us with that," said Zonta member Virginia Barnes. "She was truly a Renaissance woman." At Cal State San Bernardino, Steinman's Friday Bulletin was a weekly chronicle from the 1960s through the 1980s. Today, it is a primary source of campus history, said Johnnie Ann Ralph, retired campus librarian. Steinman earned a journalism degree at the University of Missouri and was a reporter at the Aberdeen American in South Dakota and later in Albuquerque, N.M., Hart said. She was a member of Delta Kappa Gamma honor society for women in education, and served on the boards of Town and Gown and Inland Harvest food bank, Hart said. "She was just a wonderful, caring lady," Derebery said. A memorial service will be held at 2 p.m. Friday at University United Methodist Church, 940 E. Colton Ave., Redlands. Interment will be at Hillside Memorial Park at a later date to be determined.

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