AUSTIN – Dr. Robert H. Rutford, the former president of The University of Texas at Dallas, was named president emeritus of that institution on Wednesday (July 11) by The University of Texas System Board of Regents.
Rutford served as president of UT Dallas from 1982 to 1994. He held the endowed Excellence in Education Foundation professorship of geology in the Department of Geosciences until his retirement last spring. Rutford’s research interests have been in the area of glacial geology and geomorphology, primarily in Antarctica. Chief among the many honors bestowed upon Rutford over the years are a distinguished service award from the National Science Foundation and the Antarctic Service Medal.
He received bachelor’s and master’s degrees in geography and a Ph.D. in geology from the University of Minnesota. In 1993, the University of Minnesota Board of Regents honored Rutford with its Outstanding Achievement Award and the University of Minnesota “M” Club awarded him a Lifetime Achievement Award in 1995.
Under Rutford’s presidency, UT Dallas expanded to include a lower division of freshman and sophomore students and the first on-campus student housing was developed. In addition, Rutford provided direction and support for the founding of the Erik Jonsson School of Engineering and Computer Science.
Rutford, a renowned scientist and explorer in Antarctica, has been recognized with the naming of the Rutford Ice Stream and Mt. Rutford, both in Antarctica, in his honor. Additionally, Rutford Avenue on the UT Dallas campus bears his name in recognition of his accomplishments in developing UT Dallas as an outstanding center of excellence in teaching, research and service to the Metroplex and to the state of Texas.
The University of Texas at Dallas, located at the convergence of Richardson, Plano and Dallas in the heart of the complex of major multinational technology corporations known as the Telecom Corridor, enrolls more than 14,500 students. The school’s freshman class traditionally stands at the forefront of Texas state universities in terms of average SAT scores. The university offers a broad assortment of bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degree programs.
The University of Texas System is one of the nation’s largest higher education systems, with nine academic campuses and six health institutions. The UT System has an annual operating budget of $10 billion (FY 2007) including $1.7 billion in research funded by federal, state, local and private sources. Student enrollment exceeded 190,000 in the 2006 academic year. The UT System confers more than one-third of the state's undergraduate degrees and educates nearly three-fourths of the state's health care professionals annually. With more than 80,000 employees, the UT System is one of the largest employers in the state.
Contact Anthony P. de Bruyn, UT System, (512) 499-4363 or Susan A. Rogers, UT Dallas, (972) 883-2293