Dear Friends and Colleagues,
I regret to inform you that Dr. Helen Stone Tice, a long-time colleague of our Center and a former senior analyst at the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA), passed away this past Thursday, March 8, from complications arising from a heart attack.
For those of you who knew her, you will recall Helen as a sweet and gentle person with a powerful intellect and a superb, if occasionally biting, wit. Helen pioneered the analysis of the nonprofit sector during her years at the BEA, pushing hard to establish this sector as a legitimate arena for explicit statistical focus within the official national accounts statistical system operated in the U.S. by BEA.
We were therefore extremely lucky to have attracted Helen to our Center as we turned our attention from building a research project to measure the nonprofit sector empirically at the international level to institutionalizing this capability in the System of National Accounts (SNA), the overall, official guidance system for international economic statistics overseen by the UN Statistics Division and four other major international financial agencies, such as the World Bank, the IMF, the OECD, and Eurostat.
Helen patiently—and sometimes not so patiently—taught us the SNA, with its sometimes-complex concepts, special vocabulary, and distinctive subculture of personnel and institutions. Her steady hand was crucial in guiding the development of what became the pivotal 2003 United Nations Handbook on Nonprofit Institutions in the System of National Accounts, which in turn is revolutionizing the empirical picture of the nonprofit sector around the world. Helen added gravitas and legitimacy to our effort and won for this exercise a degree of acceptance into the national accounts community that we could never have secured without her.
Although illness kept Helen from working with us in recent years, it is perhaps fitting that her passing coincides with the imminent release of a major revision and expansion of the UN NPI Handbook that her work with us was so crucial in bringing to life. This will provide an appropriate tribute to her and ensure that her contributions to understanding this crucial part of the world’s social reality will live on beyond her.
We will miss her deeply.
For those who would like to share their own reminiscences or thoughts about Helen, you can do so on our Center’s Facebook page here. We plan to present a copy of the comments collected on this page to a niece who was especially close to Helen for distribution to others in her family. If you are not on Facebook, you can also send you thoughts to Helen’s family via her Legacy pages here or here.
Finally, as Helen and her late husband Gregory were great lovers of early music, the family has requested that memorial contributions be given to the Early Music Program of the Historical Performance Department at the Peabody Institute of the Johns Hopkins University.
With warm regards,
On behalf of colleagues and Associates of The Johns Hopkins Center for Civil Society Studies
Baltimore, MD, U.S.A., March 15, 2018