September 4, 1998
Purdue selects first recipient of administrative chairWEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. -- The Purdue Board of Trustees today (Friday, 9/4) named the university's executive vice president for academic affairs, Robert L. Ringel, as the Donald S. Powers Distinguished University Administrator.
The honor, the first such for an administrator, is the equivalent of the distinguished chairs traditionally awarded to faculty members. It is named after Powers, former chairman of the board of trustees. He served on the board from 1975 to 1990.
Powers, who lives in Munster, Ind., commented: "It was my privilege to work with Bob Ringel for many years. His knowledge, his concern for students and his integrity are unmatched. I am honored that he has accepted this chair."
Ringel, who holds a faculty appointment as professor of audiology and speech sciences, will receive the highest recognition in his field later this year when the 90,000-member American Speech-Language-Hearing Association presents him with the Honors of the Association. The award recognizes his pioneering research and his advocacy of a scientific base in the study of speech and language communication disorders.
As executive vice president for academic affairs since 1991, Ringel has oversight over all academic activities of the university, which include the schools, faculty and students. His duties include matters dealing with undergraduate and graduate student recruitment and retention; the quality of academic curriculum; the recruitment and development of faculty; the operation of such academic support systems as the library, computing center, student services (admissions, registrar, financial aid and health facilities); and a number of research centers and institutes.
Ringel, who continues to teach classes at Purdue, has served as a member of the Executive Council Committee of Chief Academic Officers for the National Association of State Universities and Land Grant Colleges.
Programs developed under his supervision have received affirmative action awards, including:
Ringel served as vice president and dean of the graduate school from 1986 to 1990. He joined Purdue in 1966 as a professor of audiology and speech sciences and became head of that department in 1970. In 1973 he was appointed dean of the School of Humanities, Social Sciences and Education (now the School of Liberal Arts).
A frequent international lecturer, consultant and author on topics of contemporary importance in higher education, he has spoken to and advised universities, federal agencies and the private sector on issues that include: student accessibility; the impact of federal policy changes; accreditation and accountability; learning in the information age; instructional technology and distance education; and value-added education.
In 1959 he earned his bachelor's degree in speech pathology from Brooklyn College, from which he later received two distinguished alumni awards. He earned a master's in audiology and speech science from Purdue in 1960 and his doctorate from Purdue in 1962.
Powers, the owner of the Don Powers Agency Inc., an insurance and real estate firm, received his bachelor's degree in agriculture from Purdue in 1947. He served as a fighter pilot in the U.S. Navy during both World War II and the Korean War.
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