Peter Hufstader

Peter Hufstader, an educator in public and private schools, whose wry sense of humor and gentlemanly demeanor endeared him to students and colleagues alike, died on April 19 at his home in Avon, CT after a long illness. He was 84. The son of musicians and educators at NYC’s Julliard School and Rollins College, he attended the Buckley School, Phillips Andover Academy, and Yale University, receiving bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Yale. Before beginning his teaching career, he saw active duty as a commissioned officer in the U.S. Naval Reserve, serving with Patrol Squadron Seven and on the staff of Commander Fleet Air Wing Three. In addition to his many years as a high school English teacher, primarily at the Wheeler School in Providence RI, he filled leadership roles as a department chair, assistant headmaster, and acting headmaster. He left the classroom in 1988 to become a consultant to schools in curriculum and instruction. In 1995, he began a fulfilling second career as a researcher and then Research Director for Common Cause Rhode Island. In 1999, he received that organization’s RI Public Service Achievement Award, and in 2008, he received their RI Distinguished Service Award. Mr. Hufstader retired in 2008. He published a novel, The Riddle of the Graveyard, in 2018. An avid, lifelong sailor in the waters of New England, he hoped his novel would educate young adults in problem-solving, both in life and aboard small boats. Mr. Hufstader is survived by his wife of 37 years, Katharine, her parents, Susan and James Dillon, his former wife, Margaret Robinson Steele, his brother Jonathan, his children Louisa Hufstader, Christopher Hufstader, Elizabeth Balay, and Alice Moore, their spouses, four grandchildren, eleven brothers and sisters-in-law, fourteen nieces and nephews, and one great-nephew. His sister, Lucy Hufstader Sharp, and brother-in-law, John Dillon, as well as his parents, Alice Anderson and Robert Hufstader, pre-deceased him. A small memorial service will be held, and his ashes will be scattered in the waters just beyond Edgartown, MA, where he spent happy years sailing and racing sailboats. In lieu of flowers, friends and family might consider a donation to Oxfam America in his name. Carmon Funeral Home & Family Center of Avon has care of the arrangements. For condolences please visit