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Robert Jeffery Lupient

September 21, 2023 | 3 comments

Robert Jeffrey Lupient, known as “Jeff” and “R.J”, a therapist,professor,father,and loyal friend, died on September 12, 2023 in La Crosse, WI at the age of 77 with his family by his side.

Jeff was a professor for 27 years at Alfred Adler Graduate School of Minnesota, 23 years at Minneapolis Community Technical College and 11 years at St. Mary’s Jr. College in Minneapolis. He was also a faculty member at Rutgers University and Metropolitan State University. In addition, he was a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist for 31 years working part-time in several clinical settings, and his own private practice. He was a proud member of Alcoholics Anonymous, with almost 50 years of sobriety. Jeff would rather celebrate his sobriety anniversary, November 20, 1973, than his own birthday. He was also a long-time member of the North American Society of Adlerian Psychology.

Jeff was born on November 5, 1946 in Marshfield, Wisconsin to Robert L. Lupient and Aurelia Anna Aurelia (Seehafer) Lupient. He graduated from Pipestone High School in Minnesota in 1965 and from Concordia College in 1968 with a Bachelors of Arts in Speech with minors in Psychology and Theology.  He later attended Seminary at United Theological Seminary, receiving his Masters of Divinity in 1974, where he worked in many capacities delivering sermons to many churches and organizations, working with families and youth. He went on to complete a postgraduate program in Family Therapy at Georgetown University, and graduate courses at Adler University in Minnesota. Jeff was proud of the many robes he wore throughout his life, from preaching to graduate. He retired in 2017 from his years as a professor. For the next seven years, when asking Jeff if he could take a moment to talk, his witty response was his famous “You know…I’m retired”.

Jeff started many programs throughout his career. He was the co-creator and coordinator of the Family Studies Program at the United Seminary in the 1970s. He assisted with designing and directing the chemical dependency family treatment training program at St. Mary’s Junior College. He taught the first addictions counseling class at Adler,which led to the creation of a Masters in Co-occurring Disorders.

Jeff married in 1983 and became a father to 2 boys. He always shared his love of watches, golf,and cars with his sons. He went on to later become a grandfather and enjoyed sharing stories about the ‘Liliaisms’ his granddaughter would say. Jeff always bragged about his unique relationship with his former wife, and mother to his children. He would visit his sons often after their divorce , spending the weekends at her house with her current husband, whom Jeff considered family and most importantly a good friend.

He was described as a loyal friend to all, a class act, and full of humor. His colleagues remembered many moments of belly laughs, and an addiction to “swamp and mud smoothies”. He was always trying the next health drink or trend.  Jeff was a gifted teacher, working overtime to give every sincere student an opportunity to succeed. He truly cared about his students, sharing his student successes with his family.  His classrooms were filled with equal parts of serious discussion and laughter. He loved to work with different theories of human development to create useful tools and frameworks to share with others. If you wanted to hear a great storyteller, it was Jeff. Some favorite stories were about his father Bob and Grandfather Fred, two men he admired for their handcrafted woodwork, and captivating storytelling skills.  Every one of Jeff’s stories had a touch of his famous humor, he loved to mimic the voices of others in his stories, which eventually led to his famous giggle and twinkle in his eye.

Jeff was very spiritual, and described himself as a ‘progressive spiritualist’. He would share his love of literature, plant based diets, animals, and spiritual health to others. Outside of the classroom, he continued to work towards educating others about the topics most important to him. It was apparent why Jeff was such a wonderful teacher, due to his passion and creative thinking. He truly believed in personal growth in others, never held a grudge, and touched many lives.

He is survived by his former wife and friend, Marilyn (James Edward Brickl) Elizabeth Franzini and their sons Nicolas (Malena Marie Lupient) Franzini Lupient and Josef (Miranda Andrea Sanchez-Lupient) Franzini Lupient. Nicolas and Malena went on to have Jeff’s only grandchild, Lilia Marie Lupient –  all of West Salem, WI.  He is preceded in death by his parents, and sister Mary Lou (Carl) Linder.

A celebration of life will be held in the community room at the Zvago Glen Lake Senior Co-op, 14301 Stewart Lane, Minnetonka,MN on October 21,2023, from1-4pm to celebrate a man who will be greatly missed. Please bring your humorous stories and fondest memories of Jeff to share with family and friends.

In remembrance of Jeff’s life, the family asks that any donations be made to Coulee Region Humane Society, 911 Critter Court, Onalaska WI 54650 in memory of his beloved cat’s Max and Sammy.

Rest with the angels. You made us laugh, and taught us all.



  1. Tony Anthonisen

    Goodbye and RIP my best friend of 60 years!

  2. Laura

    I am saddened to her of Jeffs passing.
    Jeff was my favorite professor!
    First at MCTC then years later at Adler. He was instrumental in me having a corrective experience in my educational experiences , and in my becoming an LMFT too.
    May he rest well.

  3. Susan Zimmerman

    I’m so very sad to learn of Jeff’s passing. Bursts of memories keep coming. I especially remember his Communications class at Adler, and how he taught use of genograms, which I still use today and have taught 18 employees. He also was my thesis advisor and I felt very fortunate to have his advice along the way. He’ll be remembered fondly for always!


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