Obituary of John W. Ryan, former president of Indiana University

John W. Ryan, the 14th president of Indiana University, who guided its development into an eight-campus institution, and the chancellor emeritus of the State University of New York (SUNY), died Saturday, August 6th, 2011 at the age of 81.

Ryan was IU's president from 1971 to 1987. Under his stewardship, the university experienced academic success and major growth in enrollment and financial support. During that time, 37 faculty members were named Guggenheim Fellows and three were named MacArthur Fellows.

He restructured the institution and transformed IU into a multi-campus university that serves every region of the state. IU Southeast in New Albany and IU East in Richmond opened during his tenure. Numerous programs and schools were created, including the School of Public and Environmental Affairs, the School of Journalism, the School of Continuing Studies and the School of Optometry.

His 16 years as IU president exceeded the length of all but three of his predecessors, Herman B Wells, William Lowe Bryan and Andrew Wylie. Ryan held the titles of IU president emeritus and professor emeritus in the School of Public and Environmental Affairs at the time of his death. He also was a member of the Board of Directors at the IU Foundation.

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