2005 Honorary Degree
Richard D. Waterfield
Richard D. Waterfield has distinguished himself as a business and community leader in Fort Wayne.
He is a lifelong resident of Fort Wayne and graduated from South Side High School in 1962. He went on to earn his bachelor of arts degree from Denison University in Ohio in 1966 and his master's of business administration from Northwestern University in Illinois in 1968.
For many years, Waterfield was president and chief executive officer of Waterfield Mortgage Company, the largest privately held mortgage company in the United States with 40 offices servicing some $20 billion worth of mortgages. He had numerous opportunities to move the company headquarters to other cities but chose to stay in Fort Wayne, helping both the local economy and the quality of life for his 2,200 local employees.
He has been very involved in the community, serving as a board member for the Fort Wayne-Allen County Economic Development Alliance, Fort Wayne Sports Corporation, Canterbury School Foundation Board, Riley Hospital Foundation Finance Committee and Indiana State Chamber of Commerce, among others.
Waterfield has been very generous in funding scholarships to Fort Wayne Community Schools, Canterbury School and IPFW.
While the hard work and generosity of many people made IPFW's first student housing project possible, it was the uncommon generosity of Waterfield, his company and his family foundation that finalized funding for the project's first phase. When the financial package for the project encountered difficulty, Waterfield stepped forward to complete the deal that supported construction of the new "Waterfield Campus."
He also formed and principally owned the Convention Center Associates that built and for many years owned the downtown Convention Center and made its financing possible.
He was instrumental in creating the Courthouse Green by assembling all the land and transferring it to the parks department and arranging for a substantial donation from the Waterfield Foundation for completion of the park.
Waterfield also renovated and restored several buildings in downtown Fort Wayne.