Well-known Malibu philanthropist dies


Ed Stotsenberg, 86, one of the original Malibu cityhood proponnents in the early ’60s, died Monday after a serious illness.

He contracted Legionnaires disease in 1996, which had left his lungs weak.

Born in North Dakota on a large homestead farm, the fifth child of nine, Stotsenberg was raised in Yakima, Wash. from the age of 7.

Stotsenberg met Dorothy, his wife of 62 years, in Yakima, where they eventually married. They later moved to California where he began his accountancy practice, which lasted 55 years. He also taught accountancy at USC.

Having first lived in Big Rock, the two eventually moved to a 44-acre mountaintop off Encinal Canyon.

Stotsenberg, who was a master flyfisherman, as well as a skier, runner and horse-trainer, and who referred to himself as a retired philanthropist, was the third president of the Malibu Township Council in the 1950s.

He began running at the age of 63, when he burned his hands on sumac and needed an activity. He stopped running a year ago. However, he took up coaching senior running at Pepperdine University.

Among the many other Stotsenberg pursuits were the guitar, which he took up in ’73 to keep his brain active after retirement from his CPA practice, and the piano, which he learned to play when Dorothy turned 40 and he bought her a concert piano.

Supporters of classical music, the Stotsenbergs have sponsored the Stotsenberg Recital Series at Pepperdine and the Stotsenberg Classical Guitar Competition every June at Pepperdine.

A memorial celebration will take place Aug. 18, at Pepperdine’s Smothers Theater at 3 p.m. A member of the Neptune Society, Stotsenberg’s remains will be cremated.