Lalita A. Manrai

September 7, 2018

Dr. Lalita A. Manrai, 68, of Newark, DE, passed away on September 7, 2018.

Lalita was born in Raipur, India, the daughter of Dr. and Mrs. Harbans and Kamal Lall. Lalita was a trailblazer from a young age. She was one of a handful of women to study engineering at her college in India in the 1960s and to earn an MBA from the Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad in 1976. She earned a doctorate from Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management in 1987.

Lalita was the first female faculty member to be promoted to the rank of full Professor in the history of the Lerner College of Business & Economics at the University of Delaware. She was a Professor at UD for over 30 years, taught thousands of undergraduate and graduate students, and published over 120 research papers in international marketing, cross-cultural consumer behavior, and global business strategy. She was loved by her colleagues and students.

Lalita was a citizen of the world. She coined the “FIT model” to guide her life – Family, Intellectual work, and Travel and tourism. She visited 146 countries on all seven continents, and always took time to appreciate the diversity of human cultures and experience. She embraced music, dance, and art from around the world.

Her most celebrated roles were as a loving wife, mother, and grandmother. Lalita was the driving force behind her family’s adventures and unity. She inspired in her husband and children an everlasting love of humanity, service, and scholarship. Lalita’s legacy lives on through her devoted husband of 42 years, Ajay; her children, Padmini and Arjun; daughter-in-law Rachna; and her adored granddaughter and lookalike Reena.

Services will be private.

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