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Edward Rockey, PhD

Emeritus Professor of Applied Behavioral Science
Graziadio Business School


Born in 1928, Dr. Rockey was raised in a lower middle class family in Queens, New York. At 17, with no plans for college, he worked as a farmer in upstate New York and later as a deckhand on Erie barge canals prior to joining the army. After serving in the military, he decided to develop a skill as a machinist—a decision that led to a breakthrough in young Rockey’s thinking about his talents and his calling. With a renewed sense of self, new horizons opened up to him that drew him first to the ministry and eventually to the academy.

Rockey’s multi-decade relationship with Pepperdine began with a fateful phone call in 1968 from Bill Banowsky, then-executive vice president of George Pepperdine College. Rockey officially began his career at Pepperdine in July 1970 as both a faculty member and an administrator, working with George Pepperdine College as it transitioned to become Seaver College—Pepperdine’s emerging flagship liberal arts college at the new Malibu campus—and later the Graziadio Business School. After more than 44 years of distinguished service to Pepperdine, Rockey was named professor emeritus in 2014.

He presented programs on creative problem solving, communication, stress management, and leadership for corporations such as Procter & Gamble and Prudential Insurance and for smaller companies. He wrote, narrated, produced, and marketed the workbook/cassette album Successful Time Managementand authored Communicating in Organizations. Rockey also lectured in several countries as well as at an international conference in New Zealand, which published his work on coaching students to write and present original, current, actual case studies, which class members attempted to solve.

Nothing pleased Rockey more than to hear from former students, as he routinely did, who expressed their appreciation for learning how to listen, engage, communicate, and collaborate.


  • New York University, Doctor of Philosophy

  • City University of New York, Master of Arts

  • New York University, Bachelor of the Arts