IU President McRobbie awards President's Medal to IU Cinema Founding Director Jon Vickers

From top: Indiana University President Michael A. McRobbie, left, presents the President’s Medal of Excellence to IU Cinema Founding Director Jon Vickers before an outdoor screening of “Cinema Paradiso” on the field at Memorial Stadium on Tuesday, Sept. 29, 2020; Audience members watch a socially-distant screening of “Cinema Paradiso”; A couple embraces as they watch "Cinema Paradiso" from the field. Photos by James Brosher, Indiana University

Indiana University President Michael A. McRobbie presented IU Cinema Founding Director Jon Vickers with the President's Medal for Excellence during an outdoor screening of "Cinema Paradiso" Sept. 29 at Memorial Stadium. The event was Vickers' last with the Cinema before stepping down at the end of September.

During his inaugural address in 2007, McRobbie announced plans to convert the former University Theatre on IU Bloomington's campus into its first cinema. Vickers was hired as its founding director to help bring McRobbie's vision to life.


Indiana University Cinema Director Jon Vickers looks over his notes as he waits to introduce a screening of “Cinema Paradiso” in Memorial Stadium at IU Bloomington on Tuesday, Sept. 29, 2020. The film screening was Vickers’ final public event as IU Cinema’s founding director.

As it approaches its ten-year anniversary, the cinema has presented nearly 3,000 public events, issued more than 312,000 tickets and screened nearly 2,3000 unique films. McRobbie said Vickers has helped foster innovative academic collaborations, attract film legends to campus and bring people together through the communal experience of cinema. 

"As the founding director of IU Cinema, Jon and his talented staff quickly built the cinema into one of the finest university cinemas in the nation, not just in the view of those of us who frequent it regularly, but also in the opinion of such legends of the cinema as Meryl Streep, Glenn Close, Werner Herzog, and many others," McRobbie said. 

Vickers said IU Cinema's success isn't the result of one person's work, but the dedication of a talented team. 

"I could have never dreamed a decade ago that an honor like this was possible for the work that we love to do," he said.

Read McRobbie's remarks