John J. Lingel; School Administrator

John J. Lingel, former administrator of 67 elementary and junior high schools in the South Bay area of the Los Angeles Unified School District, has died. He was 70.

Lingel, who retired in 1986 after 40 years with the district, died Monday of cancer.

For the last four years he had served as consultant to the Center for Quality Education at Cal State Dominguez Hills.

Lingel was known for his positive reinforcement of subordinates and students and for giving subordinates wide latitude in doing their jobs.


“Human achievement is in some direct proportion to people’s freedom to be creative, to develop and use their own inner resources,” Lingel once said in an interview. “My approach is to give people options and then ask them what I can do to help them succeed.”

Lingel earned his bachelor’s degree from Lawrence University in Appleton, Wis., his master’s from USC and his doctorate from UCLA. He served as an Army Air Force officer during World War II.

He is survived by his wife, Jerry Ann; two daughters, Kelly Lingel of Los Alamitos and Kim Bedell of Watsonville; a brother, and three grandsons.

A memorial service is scheduled for 11 a.m. Sunday, Oct. 7, in the courtyard of Malaga Cove Plaza 3, Palos Verdes Estates.

The family has asked that any memorial contributions be made to the American Cancer Society.