A Life of Integrity, Scholarship, and Service: Honoring Bruce Jaffee

North End Zone Student Academic Center Lobby
IU Bloomington
Bloomington, Indiana
June 27, 2011

Introduction: A Fitting Venue

Just take a look around this wonderful academic center, soon to be named in honor of exceptionally successful Hoosier businessman D. Ames Shuel. It is one of the largest such centers in the Big Ten Conference and provides an ideal environment for IU’s student athletes to concentrate on their academic responsibilities. There may be no more fitting venue to recognize the great accomplishments of this afternoon’s guest of honor, Bruce Jaffee.

As a faculty member at IU for over three decades, a representative on the IU Athletics Committee for the past fourteen years, and the Faculty Athletic Representative for eight, Bruce has been one of the strongest advocates for student-athletes, helping them successfully strike a balance between academics and athletics. 

Trusted Advisor, Mentor, and Friend

At the most difficult times, this university could have asked for no more capable, reliable, and principled representative than Bruce Jaffee. He has been a trusted advisor to three university presidents, each of whom has been asked to make decisions that would determine the future of IU Athletics. Bruce’s excellent judgment and steadiness under pressure earned him tremendous respect not only among his colleagues at IU, but also among colleagues throughout the Big Ten Conference and at the NCAA, colleagues who regularly turned to Bruce for leadership and advice.  

As James Wimbush put it, “[Bruce’s] capable leadership of the athletics committee during a challenging time in the history of IU athletics provided a model for me to follow when I became chair of the committee, and even later as an administrator.  His uncanny ability to get to the bottom of an issue, his unwavering integrity, and his uncommon ability to see the big picture while also paying meticulous attention to the most minute details has enabled him to contribute greatly to IU.”

Julia Lamber, current chair of the Athletics Committee, shares James’ sentiments, saying, “Bruce makes things possible.  He is a man of integrity and wit; loyal to IU but especially to the students; knowledgeable and willing to share this knowledge and experience beyond the campus: at the Big Ten, the NCAA, with his fellow Faculty Athletics Representatives.  He is a great friend and mentor.” 1

Of course, James and Julia are not alone in their high opinion of Bruce.  Ask any one of his colleagues about him, and they will likely share these same feelings about his keen insight, his commitment to Indiana University students, and his character.  

The True Meaning of Service

Throughout his career, Bruce has exemplified the true meaning of service.   His service extends from the Kelley School of Business across the university and ranges from the Urban Affairs Committee to the Advisory Committee in the Office of Women’s Affairs; from the Student Fulbright Selection Committee to the Hutton Honors College Policy Committee. And these are just four out of the eighty-three he has listed on his vita.  All of us know there are more than those. To all of these, Bruce has brought a well-respected voice of integrity.  He is the person to whom many of us have turned over the years when we needed someone we could rely on to make the right decision even when that decision was difficult.  

The Life of a Scholar: At IU and Around the World

All of this has been in addition to Bruce’s productive research program, outstanding teaching, and administrative duties in the Kelley School.  His research in the areas of economic policy, macroeconomics, the economic development aspects of sports, energy policy, and industry regulation has been supported by the U.S. State Department, the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission, the U.S. Agency for International Development, and many other organizations.  His teaching has garnered him awards for teaching excellence, outstanding faculty member awards, and master instructor awards.  And he has served as Associate Dean for Academics, Chairman of the Department of Business Economics and Public Policy, and Chair of Doctoral Programs in Business at the beginning of his tenure at IU.

Bruce has lived the life of a scholar both here and around the world.  While tirelessly serving Indiana University, he has also served as an advisor at the University of Shanghai for Science and Technology; worked with the federally-funded Management Education Project in Hungary, Poland, and the Czech Republic; served as Project Director of the Management Training Cooperation in Hungary; and played an integral role in the International Graduate Business School in Zagreb, Croatia, including serving as trustee.

Presentation of Award

For these reasons, and so many others, it is my pleasure to ask Bruce to come forward for a special presentation.

In recognition of your outstanding contributions over thirty years and your tireless commitment to this university, its students, and its faculty, to your discipline, and to the ideals that lie at the heart of our intellectual culture, it is my great pleasure to present to you the Indiana University Distinguished Service Medal.

Bruce, thank you and congratulations.

Source Notes

  1.  Both responses are drawn from e-mail correspondence. Indiana University Office of the President. 16 June 2011.