Sturr majored in art and philosophy at St. Ambrose College, Davenport, Iowa, where he received his BA (1959). He received an MS from the Institute of Design, Chicago (1964), and studied at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago (1966-67). In 1973 he received a Doctor of Education degree from Illinois State University College of Fine Arts in Normal.
Sturr has served as assistant professor of art at Kansas State University, Manhattan, since 1974. Prior to that he held the same position at North-east Missouri State University, Kirksville (1973- 74), and was instructor of photography at Morton College, Cicero, Illinois, from 1967 to 1970. The artist describes his work as taking a technically "straight approach".
A member of SPE since 1963 and the National Art Education Association since 1973.