sealPurdue News

August 28, 2002

Award created to honor Purdue retiree supporters

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. – Former Purdue University President Arthur G. Hansen's commitment to his alma matter and its retirees, even after his own retirement, is being honored.

The Purdue University Retirees Association and the Office of the President will announce Thursday (8/29) the creation of a $2,500 annual award in Hansen's name to recognize university offices and departments that foster strong relationships with retirees. Hansen, Purdue's eighth president, established the retirees' association in 1976.

The Arthur G. Hansen Recognition Award will be given annually to a Purdue school, department, office or division that involves its retirees by inviting them to receptions to help with student organizations, assist with alumni contacts or organize archival materials.

"Many Purdue retirees have spent much of their careers at Purdue, and during that time they developed a strong sense of loyalty and pride in the university," said Betty M. Nelson, dean of students from 1987 to 1995. "Through the retirees' work they have enhanced the image of the university, and many of them continue to contribute to Purdue's preeminence with their talents, time and gifts. Often that is at the invitation of a Purdue department or school.

"It is only appropriate this award be named for former President Hansen, who created the Purdue Retirees Association 25 years ago," Nelson said. "President Emeritus Hansen understands the importance of including retired faculty for the success of the university's future."

Hansen served as Purdue's president from 1971 to 1982. A native of Sturgeon Bay, Wis., he received two degrees from Purdue – a bachelor's degree in electrical engineering in 1946 and a master's degree in mathematics in 1948. In 1958 he received his doctorate in mathematics from Case Institute of Technology. Hansen holds several honorary degrees, including a 1970 honorary doctorate in engineering from Purdue.

The creation of the award will be announced at the Purdue Retirees Association luncheon at University Inn at 11:30 a.m. Thursday. The theme of this year's luncheon is "Purdue: The Tradition Continues." President Martin C. Jischke will speak, and Hansen will attend.

In addition to the $2,500 award, a plaque recognizing the winner also will be hung in the Purdue Memorial Union. Nelson said the award is funded by a grant from the Purdue retirement program, TIAA-CREF.

Any Purdue retiree can submit a nomination for a department, division, office or school. The nominations must be received in Human Resource Services in Freehafer Hall by Dec. 1 of each year. The award will be presented in the spring.

Writer: Amy Patterson-Neubert, (765) 494-9723;

Source: Betty Nelson, (765) 463-3144

Purdue News Service: (765) 494-2096;

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