Ichabod Notables

Ichabod Notables A through G

We are proud to present some of our outstanding Ichabods. To learn more about each one, click on the + symbol next to their name. 

James R. Ahrens (1919-2013)

James R. AhrensJames R. Ahrens, distinguished professor of law, retired from the Washburn University School of Law in 1988 after 40 years of service, longer than any other full-time faculty member in the law school’s history. He joined the faculty in 1948 after serving as special assistant to the U.S. Treasury Department in Chicago and in the Army during World War II. The son of Presbyterian missionaries, Ahrens grew up in India and traveled extensively, cultivating a lifelong curiosity and commitment to learning and teaching. He taught torts and constitutional law and was faculty adviser to the moot court team, which competed in five national finals. He also initiated the annual Law Institute, a forerunner of today’s continuing legal education program. A prominent alumnus established the Ahrens Chair in Tort Law, which provides funds for a faculty member. He earned both a bachelor of arts degree from the College of Wooster (Ohio) and a juris doctor from the University of Chicago. In 1974, he received the Washburn University School of Law Alumni Honorary Life Membership Award.

R. Stanley “Stan” Alexander (1909-2004)

R Stanley AlexanderR. Stanley “Stan” Alexander, bs 1936, served 1948-74 as chairman and professor of astronomy, engineering and physics. In 1966, he retrieved Washburn’s 1889 Warner and Swasey telescope after a tornado tore off the roof of Crane Observatory, led a fundraising effort to refurbish it and established an endowed fund for the telescope’s ongoing care and upkeep. Alexander joined Washburn’s faculty in 1940, but left for a brief period during World War II to design naval radar equipment. After retiring with emeritus status in 1974, he continued to teach until 1980. He was a charter member of the Topeka Camera Club and the Topeka Civic Symphony, for which he played timpani and percussion. He earned a master’s of arts degree from the University of Kansas and a doctorate from the University of Pennsylvania. Washburn honored him with an Alumni Distinguished Service Award in 1979.

The Honorable Harry Kyle Allen (1872-1959)

Harry Allen

The Honorable Harry Kyle Allen served 1922-36 as dean of the Washburn University School of Law. The longest-serving dean to date, Allen was an able administrator who raised academic standards and modernized curriculum. He also was a respected and inspiring teacher with a long tenure of part-time service throughout his legal career. In 1937, he was elected to the Kansas Supreme Court, served one term and then returned to practicing law. He retired in 1959 as general counsel for Commerce Bank in Kansas City, Mo. In 1895, he earned a law degree from Washington University, St. Louis, Mo., and developed an expertise in land title law. President Theodore Roosevelt appointed him to examine Indian land titles in Oklahoma, where Allen also assisted in writing that state’s constitution and served as a senator in Oklahoma’s first legislature. Washburn conferred an honorary doctor of law on him in 1935 and an Alumni Distinguished Service Award in 1956.

Steven Lee Anson (1954-2014)

Steven Lee AnsonSteven Lee Anson served 35 years as a Washburn administrative faculty member, beginning in 1979. During his tenure, he was head baseball coach, achieving an 844-798-3 record in 1,645 games, and also served as assistant athletic director and assistant basketball coach. He was honored twice as Coach of the Year, in 1989 from the Central States Intercollegiate Conference (CSIC) and 1994 from the Mid-America Intercollegiate Athletics Association (MIAA) and received an Outstanding Service Award from Washburn in 1999. Known for his loyalty to and care of his players on and off the field, he coached 96 all-MIAA selections, with two players tapped for the Major League Baseball draft and two playing in the Majors. He also served as an assistant baseball coach at Kansas State University, where he earned both master’s and bachelor’s degrees and played basketball for three years and baseball for four years, was a Big Eight batting champion and still holds the record for number of triples. He was named to the K-State All-Century Team and inducted into the Washburn Athletics Hall of Fame in 2014.

Miriam Baker Loo (1914-2000)

Miriam Baker LooMiriam Baker Loo, ba 1936, was a pioneer in the mail-order industry. She founded Current Inc. in 1950 in her basement with a direct mail appeal offering post cards to non-profit groups for use in fundraising. In the next 20 years, the venture grew into a multi-million dollar company that sold paper products of all types, many of which Loo designed. She also authored cookbooks that sold millions of copies. She served as a Washburn University Foundation trustee and supported many philanthropic organizations in the Colorado Springs area, including youth and adult theatre. She was inducted into the Topeka High School Hall of Fame in 1992. A theatre major at Washburn, she was a member of the Washburn Players, Nonoso and Delta Gamma sorority, which honored her in 1983 with the national Order of the Delta Gamma Rose. Washburn honored her with a Distinguished Service Award in 1977 and conferred an honorary doctor of commerce on her in 1990.

Bernard “Bernie” Anthony Bianchino (1948- )

Bernard BianchinoBernard “Bernie” Anthony Bianchino, ba 1970, jd 1974, is president and chief executive officer of Jaguar Telecom LLC. His career spans service with the Atomic Energy Commission, Exxon Corp., Sprint, US Sprint, Sprint PCS, Qwest Communications, Pagaso PCS and OnFiber Communications. As a student, he played football and was a member of Kappa Sigma fraternity and Sagamore. He served many years in leadership positions with the Washburn University Foundation, Washburn Alumni Association, Washburn University School of Law Board of Governors and the Law School Foundation. He received an Alumni Fellow award in 2004, the President’s Award in 2002, and a Washburn University School of Law Alumni Distinguished Award in 2007 and the Alumni Distinguished Service Award in 2004. Washburn conferred an honorary doctor of public service on him in 2011. With his wife, Marilyn Dyck Bianchino, b ed 1972, he supports many projects and scholarships, including the Living Learning Center and the Bianchino Pavilion in the football stadium.

Henry Seavey Blake, Jr. (1911-1990)

Harry Blake, photoby Wichers Photography

Henry Seavey Blake Jr., bs 1933, saved the lives of many wounded soldiers and sailors in the South Pacific theater during World War II by designing and constructing a portable refrigerated container for whole blood that could be successfully parachuted to the battlefront. After his military service as director of a Navy/Army blood donor program, Blake enjoyed a long career as a leader in the Topeka medical community, serving as chief of surgery at Stormont-Vail Hospital, president of the Kansas Blue Shield board, chairman of the National Association of Blue Shield and president of the Topeka Blood Bank. He also was president of the Capper Foundation for Crippled Children and Downtown Topeka Rotary Club and a leader in founding Washburn’s International House, the International Center of Topeka and the Topeka Recreation Commission. Blake received an Alumni Distinguished Service Award in 1980. He received a medical degree from Cornell University, Ithaca, N.Y., and was named to the Topeka High School Hall of Fame.

* Photo by Wichers Photography

Samuel Drake Bowker (1835-1868)

Samuel Drake DowkerSamuel Drake Bowker was a founder of Lincoln College, now Washburn University, and a graduate of Bangor (Maine) Theological Seminary. An ordained minister, Bowker came to Topeka in 1864 and joined a group of Congregationalists who were working to establish a college in Topeka. The group included his brother, W.E. Bowker, who served on the original board of trustees. Bowker was the College’s first financial agent and traveled east in 1865 to seek donations. He met with President Abraham Lincoln during his trip. Bowker’s efforts brought the financial backing needed to construct the first building and open the school for the first term. Bowker was the first principal of the Washburn Preparatory School, known later as the Academy, and also a professor of English literature and grammar at the College. With his wife, he maintained a boarding house for students who lived outside of Topeka. He resigned due to ill health in 1867 and died the following year.

Gregory Dean Brenneman (1961-)

Greg Brenneman

Gregory Dean Brenneman, bba 1984, is a nationally recognized business leader and serves as chairman and a member of the investment committee of CCMP Capital Advisors LLC, where he executes the firm’s overall strategy and coaches the senior management of CCMP’s portfolio companies. He formerly served as chief executive officer, president and executive chairman of Quiznos Sub; chairman and chief executive officer of Burger King; president and chief executive officer of PwC Consulting; and president and chief operating officer and a member of the board of directors of Continental Airlines, where he led one of the most dramatic turnarounds in American business history. In 1994, he founded Turnworks Inc., which focuses on corporate turnarounds. He holds a master of business administration degree with distinction from Harvard Business School, Boston, Mass. He serves on the Home Depot and Baker Hughes Inc. boards of directors. A Washburn University Foundation trustee, he established the Greg and Rhonda Brenneman Professorship of Business Strategy. He received the Alumni Fellow Award in 1997 from Washburn, and in 1999 the University conferred on him an honorary doctor of commerce.

Eldo Frederick Bunge (1908-94)

E.F. BungeEldo Frederick Bunge joined the Washburn faculty in 1946 as professor and chairman of the English department, which included literature, composition, journalism, speech and drama. He also served 1957-59 as acting dean of the College of Liberal Arts and retired as professor emeritus in 1972 after 27 years of service. A renowned teacher, his emphasis was focused on Chaucer, Milton and Shakespeare. He regularly presented papers at the Fortnightly Literary Club, where he served as president. He also was a top-ranking area tennis player. In retirement, he was a founder of the Washburn Walkers, which grew to nearly 500 seniors who combined walking on campus with group lectures. Prior to Washburn, Bunge served 1943-46 as a lieutenant commander in the Naval Reserve and taught in the high school and junior college in Iowa Falls, Iowa, and at Augustana College in Rock Island, Ill., where he also served as dean of men. He earned a bachelor’s degree from Luther College, Decorah, Iowa, and master’s and doctorate degrees from Iowa State University.

Horatio Quincy Butterfield (1822-1894)

Horatio Quincy ButterfieldHoratio Quincy Butterfield served 1869-71 as the first president of Washburn College. He joined the Lincoln College faculty in 1866 as professor of ancient languages and was appointed field agent. In this capacity, he traveled east in 1868 and successfully solicited a $25,000 donation from Ichabod Washburn, a wealthy industrialist. It was Butterfield who recommended the board of trustees rename the College in honor of Washburn. The trustees appointed Butterfield president the following year. After serving 18 months as Washburn’s president, he resigned to take a position as secretary of the Society for the Promotion of Collegiate and Theological Education at the West. Six years later, in 1876, he became president of Olivet (Mich.) College, where he served 16 years, retiring in 1893. He was an ordained minister and a graduate of Harvard University, Cambridge, Mass., and Bangor (Maine) Theological Seminary.

Walter Caldwell (1878-1959)

Walter CaldwellWalter Caldwell graduated in 1906 from Kansas Medical College, a part of Washburn College. The only African-American on the 1903 football team, his placekick defeated the University of Kansas in the Missouri Valley Championship game. He was named to the first string All-Kansas team and his record was published in newspapers across the United States. A Washburn Review article reported an incident involving a Kansas City team that stipulated Caldwell not be allowed to play. The article commended Washburn’s manager for refusing to play until the restriction was withdrawn, noting, “He is a star and they know it, but what is more important than that, he is a man and we know it.” After graduating, Caldwell practiced medicine in Topeka until 1908 and then moved to Atchison, Kan. In 1917, he settled his family in Kansas City, where he specialized in pediatrics for 40 years, retiring in 1957.

Ken Calwell (1962- )

Ken CalwellKen Calwell, bba 1984, is chief executive officer and president and serves on the board of directors for Papa Murphy’s International. Calwell has worked more than 27 years in the food service industry, beginning in 1986 at Pillsbury. In 1988, he joined Pizza Hut, serving as vice president of marketing and launching Veggie Lovers and Meat Lovers pizzas. He worked two years for Frito Lay and then joined Wendy’s International in 1998 as vice president of new product marketing research and testing. He served 2001-08 at Domino’s Pizza as executive vice president, chief marketing officer and then returned to Wendy’s and served 2008-11 as chief marketing officer and executive vice president of research and development. Washburn honored him as an Alumni Fellow in 2004 and as the Oscar S. Stauffer Executive in Residence in 2012. In 2011, the Topeka Capital-Journal named him Kansan of the Year. He holds a master’s degree in business administration from Indiana University, Bloomington, Ind.

Samuel E. Cary (1886-1961)

Samuel E. CarySamuel E. Cary, jd 1910, was the first African-American to graduate from the Washburn University School of Law. At age 24, Cary opened a law office in Russell Springs, Kan., and was elected county attorney in 1914. After moving to Colorado, he was admitted to the bar in 1919 and began practicing in the Five Points area of Denver, specializing in criminal law. He embraced a clientele many mainstream lawyers turned away. He was the first licensed black attorney in Colorado and one of the earliest African-American pioneers in the field of law in the American West. He retired from his law practice in 1945. The Sam Cary Bar Association, the first minority bar association in Colorado, is named in his honor. He received the Washburn Law Lifetime Achievement Award in 2011.

Brigadier General Arthur Seymour Champeny (Ret.) (1893-1979)

General ChampenyBrigadier General Arthur Seymour Champeny, ba 1917, one of the Army’s most decorated officers, is the only American to be awarded the Distinguished Service Cross in three different wars: in World War I near St. Mihiel, France; in World War II at Infante Santa Maria, Italy; and in the Korean War at Haman, Korea. He also received the Silver Star, five Purple Hearts, two French Croix de Guerre, the French Legion of Honor and the Italian Bronze Medal of Military Valor. He retired in 1953 as commander, 7th Armory Division of Camp Roberts, Calif., after 35 years of active duty and moved to Oxford, Kan., with his wife, Marjorie Herrig Champeny, ba 1919. As a student, he excelled in football, basketball and track, played in the band and orchestra and was a member of Phi Delta Theta fraternity. He gave the principal address at the dedication of the Memorial Union on Washburn’s Founder’s Day in 1952. Washburn conferred an honorary master’s degree on him in 1923.

David Vincent Chavez (1965- )

David ChavezDavid Vincent Chavez, ba 1988, is a national Hispanic leader in public relations, marketing, strategic event production and advocacy. As chief operating officer of LatinPointe Inc., he produces programming that reaches millions of Latinos nationally. He served as executive producer of two Latino-themed prime time network television specials in both English and Spanish and is producer of the ALMA Awards, considered the Latin Oscars, which honor Latinos in television, film and music and Tecate Premios Deportes, which honor Latino athletes. LatinPoint produced the Comedy Central/Showtime Alex Reymundo Comedy TV special and NBC- aired Hispanic Heritage Awards from the Kennedy Center. Chavez also serves on the board of directors for Diversity Affluence, the Academy of Tejano Musicians and the Skywalk Memorial Foundation. Prior to LatinPointe, Chavez served as a member of the senior staff of the National Council of La Raza, the nation’s largest Hispanic civil rights group. Washburn honored him as an Alumni Fellow in 2009.

Floyd C. Covington (1901-89)

Floyd C. CovingtonFloyd C. Covington, ba 1927, was a national leader in the African American community for more than four decades. An advocate for fair housing and career opportunities for African Americans, he served 19 years as executive director of the Los Angeles branch of the National Urban League and 14 years with the Federal Housing Administration as Racial Relations Advisor, which covered 10 western states. Subsequently, he was appointed an Equal Opportunity Specialist at the Department of Housing and Urban Development, retiring in 1970. He also served on many state and local commissions and advisory boards, including California Gov. Earl Warren’s Crime Commission. His writings on economics, sociology and racial relations were published in scholarly journals, and he frequently lectured on these topics at colleges, universities and civic and government organizations. He earned a master’s degree in sociology and economics at the University of Pittsburgh, Pa., in 1928. Washburn honored him with a Distinguished Service Award in 1972.

Kathryn Mary D’Agostino-Wachsman (1949- )

Kathryn Mary D'Agostino-WachsmanKathryn Mary D’Agostino-Wachsman, jd 1975, is a New York-based attorney with extensive experience in litigation, including medical malpractice, personal injury and general practice of law. She is a partner at the Law Offices of Harvey F. Wachsman MD, JD LLP and serves as board chairman, vice president and founding shareholder of CTI Science Inc., a start-up biotechnology company, and is vice president of JMD Enterprises, LLC, a certified woman-owned, disadvantaged, small business wholesaler of plumbing and HVAC supplies and materials in 17 states. She is a founding board member of the nonprofit organizations Achievement Center for Excellence and College Outreach USA, which provide minority, inner city and low-income students with mentoring and college opportunities and supports Nyumbani Orphanage for children with AIDS in Nairobi, Kenya. She serves as a member of the Washburn University School of Law Board of Governors and holds a bachelor’s degree from Avila University, Kansas City, Mo.

Richard K. "Dick" Davidson (1942-)

Dick Davidson

Richard K. “Dick” Davidson, ba 1966, retired from Union Pacific Corp. as chief executive officer in 2006 and as chairman in 2007 following a distinguished career that began in 1960 with the Missouri Pacific Railroad. He completed the Program for Management Development at Harvard University, Cambridge, Mass., and served on numerous professional and civic boards, including the Association of American Railroads, the President’s National Infrastructure Advisory Council, the U.S. Strategic Command Consultation Committee and the Washburn University Foundation Board of Trustees. He is a member of the Horatio Alger Association of Distinguished Americans, the Kansas Business Hall of Fame and the Nebraska Business Hall of Fame. He was named 2012 Kansan of the Year by the Native Sons and Daughters of Kansas, and Washburn conferred an honorary doctor of commerce on him in 1994. In 2009, with his wife, Trish, he donated to Washburn the largest single gift at that time. The gift was used to support endowed professorships and chairs in the Washburn School of Business.

Addison Pease Davis (1838-71)

Lincoln College's original buildingIn June 1868, Addison Pease Davis earned the distinction of being the first person to graduate from Lincoln College. Five months later, the board of trustees renamed the school Washburn College, giving Davis the honor of being not only the first, but also the only, person to graduate from Lincoln College. Born in Bethel, Ill., Davis was a student at Beloit (Wis.) College prior to the Civil War. In 1862, he mustered into the 130th Illinois Infantry and served in Tennessee, Mississippi, Alabama and Louisiana. In April 1864, his regiment was captured and interned as prisoners of war at Camp Ford, near Tyler, Texas. Davis was released in May 1865 and mustered out of the Army. In 1866, he enrolled as a junior at Lincoln College and served as an assistant to Samuel Drake Bowker (see page 2),  principal of the preparatory school, and taught English. He also worked as a chorister at the Congregational Church while a student. After graduation, he purchased acreage and farmed for a brief time in Soldier Township, Shawnee County, Kan.

Pictured is Lincoln College's original building.

Robert Eugene "Bob" Davis (1944- )

Bob Davis

Robert Eugene “Bob” Davis, ba 1967, is a distinguished sportscaster with a career spanning 46 years. He called the play-by-play for Kansas Jayhawks football and basketball for 30 years and retired in 2013 after 16 years as a Kansas City Royals announcer. He took part in six NCAA-CBS broadcasts for the NCAA women’s Final Four. During the 2000-01 basketball season, he was named to Dick Vitale’s Sweet 16 list of top college basketball broadcasters in the nation. Davis was inducted into the Kansas Association of Broadcasters Hall of Fame and received its Hod Humiston Award. He was named Kansas Sportscaster of the Year 13 times, received the Oscar Stauffer Award for excellence in high school sports reporting twice and was honored with the Sportscaster of the Year Award from the Kansas High School Athletic Directors Association. Davis was named to the Sports Hall of Fame at Fort Hays State University, Hays, Kan., where his broadcasting career began.

* Photo courtesy of Kansas Athletics

The Honorable John Shaw Dawson (1869-1960)

The Honorable John Shaw Dawson (1869-1960)The Honorable John Shaw Dawson, jd 1906, a graduate of the first class of the Washburn University School of Law, had a long and distinguished legal career. In 1909, he served as private secretary to the governor. In 1910, he was elected as Kansas Attorney General and served two terms, 1911-15, and was president of the National Association of Attorneys General in 1914. He was the first graduate of any Kansas law school to be elected to the Kansas Supreme Court and served 30 years, including 1937-45 as chief justice. Dawson then was appointed as pardon attorney and served 10 years and four governors, retiring in 1955. He was also a part-time lecturer for the Washburn University School of Law and a member of the Law School Alumni Association Board of Directors. Washburn conferred an honorary doctor of law on him in 1927. The Washburn University School of Law awarded him the Distinguished Service Award in 1949 and a posthumous Lifetime Achievement Award in 2007.

* This photo belongs to the Kansas State Historical Society and is used with permission.

Jessie Dean (1870-1960)

Jessie DeanJessie Dean, bs 1900, served 38 years at Washburn as librarian and registrar. As a student, she was editor of the Washburn Review. After graduating from Washburn, she taught three years at Quincy School in Topeka and then joined the Washburn faculty in 1903. In 1918, she was promoted to head librarian and the rank of professor, retiring in 1941. Dean attended the Chautauqua (N.Y.) Library School and the University of Wisconsin and traveled extensively, living in Germany and Austria before World War I. She was a member of the Kansas Library Association, the American Library Association, the National Educational Association, the American Association of University Women, the YWCA and the First Congregational Church. Washburn conferred an honorary doctor of literature on her in 1933.

Lodewijk J.R. de Vink (1945- )

Lodewijk de VinkLodewijk J.R. de Vink, bba 1968, has been a leader in the pharmaceutical and health care industries for more than 40 years. He is a founding member of Blackstone Healthcare Partners LLC, where he served as the special adviser and consultant of Blackstone Healthcare Advisors at the Blackstone Group, an independent manager of private capital worldwide. He served as president of Schering Plough International and as chief executive officer of Warner Lambert Inc. He was appointed to the President’s Export Council and served on numerous boards, including as chairman of the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America, as a member of the National Foundation for Infectious Diseases and the United Negro College Fund. He is a former director of Roche and a member of the European Advisory Council of Rothschild. He is a graduate of the Netherlands School of Business and holds a master’s of business administration from American University, Washington, D.C.

The Honorable Robert “Bob” J. Dole (1923- )

Bob DoleThe Honorable Robert “Bob” J. Dole, ba 1952, jd 1952*, has developed a worldwide reputation for public service, holding elected positions in the Kansas House of Representatives, as a Russell County (Kan.) attorney and as a U.S. congressman before spending nearly 30 years as a U.S. senator. He was chairman of the Republican National Committee, president of the U.S. Senate and Senate Majority Leader, where he set a record as the longest-serving Republican leader. Dole was President Gerald Ford’s vice presidential running mate in 1976 and the Republican presidential candidate in 1988 and 1996. A World War II veteran, he served as national chairman of the World War II Memorial Campaign and authored the autobiographical One Soldier’s Story and other books. Washburn conferred on him an honorary doctor of law in 1969 and an honorary doctor of civil law in 1985. He received the Washburn Alumni Distinguished Service Award in 1966. Washburn Law honored him with the Law Alumni Association Distinguished Service Award in 1981 and the Lifetime Achievement Award in 2007.

*Dole was able to complete a bachelor’s and juris doctor in the same year because of credits earned at the University of Kansas before the war.

William Lee “Bill” Eldien (1948- )

William Lee “Bill” Eldien (1948- )William Lee “Bill” Eldien, b ed 1971, is president and chief executive officer of Nolet Spirits U.S.A. He joined the company in 1996 and works closely with the Holland-based Nolet family in building the brands of Ketel One Vodka and Nolet’s Finest Gins. Eldien previously was senior executive vice president at Young’s Market Co. and was responsible for sales and marketing in California and Hawaii. He also served with United Vintners/ Heublein as wine manager for the state of Texas, regional manager of 12 western states, western vice president and national sales manager for Heublein Wines. Eldien served as the chair of Mission Hospital’s Board of Trustees in Mission Viejo, Calif., is a member of the Drug Use Is Life Abuse board, which supports the Orange County Sheriff’s Advisory Council and is a civilian responder for the Orange County Sheriff’s Department. He graduated from the University of Southern California’s Special Business graduate program, Los Angeles, Calif. As a Washburn student, he joined Alpha Delta fraternity.

Charles DeLoss “Dee” Erickson (1897-1985)

Charles DeLoss “Dee” Erickson (1897-1985)Charles DeLoss “Dee” Erickson, ba 1923, began coaching basketball and football at Washburn in 1936 and was both athletic director and basketball coach, 1942-46. He led Washburn basketball teams to 81 victories and the 1946 Central Intercollegiate Conference (CIC) championship and was named Missouri Valley Conference Coach of the Year in 1938. He helped organize the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics and served as its president in 1944. He ran a sporting goods business for 14 years and then served five years as principal of Richland (Kan.) Grade School. In 1968, he received the National Junior Chamber of Commerce Award for his work with youth fitness and was named Greater Topeka Sportsman of the Year in 1968. As a student, he lettered four years in basketball, was captain of the 1920-21 basketball team and was a member of Kappa Sigma fraternity. He served as a president of the Washburn Alumni Association and was inducted into the Washburn Athletic Hall of Fame in 1970.

John E. Erickson (1863-1946)

John E. EricksonJohn E. Erickson, ba 1890, served 1925-33 as the eighth governor of Montana. A Democrat, he was the only Montana governor elected to three terms: 1924, 1928 and 1932. In March 1933, Erickson resigned the governorship after appointing himself to the U.S. Senate to fill the vacancy caused by the death of Thomas J. Walsh. Having lost the Democratic primary the following year, Erickson served in the U.S. Senate until Nov. 6, 1934, when a successor was elected. Prior to becoming governor, he served as Teton County (Mont.) attorney and as a district court judge. After leaving the Senate, he resumed a law practice in Helena, Mont. Washburn conferred an honorary doctor of law on him in 1940.

Jerry B. Farley and Susan L. Farley

Jerry and Susan FarleyJerry B. Farley has led a transformation of Washburn University since his inauguration as the 14th president in 1997 by establishing new academic programs, expanding support for teaching and research, increasing enrollment and invigorating student life. Many new buildings have been constructed, existing buildings have been renovated and the local technical school became the Washburn Institute of Technology in 2008. Farley served on many local and state boards and received numerous awards for public service and higher education. The Dr. Jerry and Susan Farley Professorship in Leadership was established in 2007. He is a certified public accountant. Prior to coming to Washburn, Farley served as a vice president at the University of Oklahoma. He holds a bachelor’s degree in finance and accounting, a master of business administration and a doctorate in higher education administration. He frequently speaks nationally on leadership, budgeting, finance and accounting. Susan L. Farley holds a bachelors in mathematics and a masters of education. She retired after 26 years from teaching seventh grade through college mathematics and is involved in all aspects of Washburn life.

Howard J. Faulkner (1945- )

Howard Faulkner

Howard J. Faulkner joined the Washburn English faculty in 1972 and served 38 years, retiring in 2010. He also served as chairman of the English department and as director of Washburn’s master of liberal studies program. Faulkner published three volumes of the correspondence of psychoanalyst Karl Menninger, numerous critical articles on American literature and African-American literature and authored The Rules of the Game, a book on English grammar. He received three year-long senior Fulbright lecture appointments, teaching at Moulay Ismail University in Meknes, Morocco; Sofiiski Universitet in Sofia, Bulgaria; and Univerzitet Kiril I Metodij in Skopje, Macedonia. He was a guest professor at the University of Metz, France. A respected scholar and popular professor, Faulkner received the Ned Fleming Excellence in Teaching Award in 2007 and the Roy Myers Excellence in Research Award in 1995 and 2006. The Washburn Alumni Association honored him in 2012 with the Col. John Ritchie Award.

Sherman “Everett” Fetter (1908-1993)

Sherman Sherman “Everett” Fetter greatly influenced the musical culture of both Washburn and Topeka during his long tenure, 1946-74, as professor and chairman of Washburn’s music department. In 1946, Fetter, a violinist, founded the Topeka Civic Symphony, now the Topeka Symphony Orchestra, and through 30 seasons as conductor built one of the country’s leading community orchestras. He grew the choirs and orchestra at Washburn and served as president of the Kansas Music Teachers Association. He earned a master’s degree from the University of Kansas and continued to study music throughout his life, including five summers studying conducting in France. In 1974, he received an award from the American Symphony Orchestra League. In 1976, the City of Topeka honored him with the Distinguished Citizen Award. The Washburn Honors Fetter String Quartet is named in his honor. Washburn conferred an honorary doctor of music on him in 1974.

Joan M. Finney (1925-2001)

Joan M. FinneyJoan M. Finney, ba 1982, served 1991-95 as the 42nd governor of Kansas. Taking office at age 65, she was the first woman and the oldest person to be governor in Kansas, and one of the state’s longest-serving public officials. Finney joined the Washington, D.C., office of Senator Frank Carlson in 1953 and worked as his top administrative aide until he retired in 1969. In 1970, she served two years as Shawnee County elections commissioner. In 1972, after losing a bid for the Republican nomination to Congress, she changed her party affiliation to Democrat and ran for state treasurer. She was the first female elected to that position and held it for 16 years. She was honored by Native Americans in Kansas for leading efforts to open casinos on tribal reservations and is also credited for the state’s 1992 school finance law. At Washburn, she was a member of the Sigma Alpha Iota fraternity for women, which she was proud of because music was important to her. Washburn conferred an honorary doctor of public service on her in 1995.

* Photo provided by the Kansas Historical Society

Daniel Moses Fisk (1846-1932)

Daniel Moses FiskDaniel Moses Fisk devoted 25 years to Washburn as a professor of sociology. During six years of service as field secretary, Fisk traveled across Kansas to raise funds for and promote Washburn in lectures on the importance of higher education. He was credited for Washburn’s growth in enrollment from 328 in 1901 to 720 in 1907. An ordained minister, Fisk came to Topeka in 1899 as pastor of the First Congregational Church after serving 14 years as a pastor in Michigan, Ohio and Missouri. Prior to ordination, Fisk taught biology for 12 years at Hillsdale (Mich.) College, where he received a doctorate in divinity. He graduated from Brown University, Providence, R.I., in 1869, studied medicine at Harvard University, Cambridge, Mass., and received a doctorate from Findlay (Ohio) College in 1890. He authored five books after retiring in 1924 and donated his library to Washburn.

Arthur “Art” Allen Fletcher (1924-2005)

Arthur Arthur “Art” Allen Fletcher, ba 1950, served as adviser to four U.S. presidents. As assistant secretary of labor 1969-71, he issued the Revised Philadelphia Plan, the foundation for affirmative action programs, and was a U.S. delegate to the United Nations in 1971. While serving as executive director of the United Negro College Fund 1972-73, he is credited with helping coin the phrase, “A mind is a terrible thing to waste.” He served as deputy assistant to the President for Urban Affairs 1976-77 and as chairman of the Commission on Civil Rights 1990-93. He briefly pursued a bid for the Republican presidential nomination in 1995. In the early 1950s, he played pro football for the Los Angeles Rams and was the first African-American to play for the Baltimore Colts. He was an assistant football coach at Washburn for the 1957-58 seasons. In 1972, he was inducted into the Washburn Athletic Hall of Fame, and he received the Alumni Distinguished Service Award in 1970. Washburn conferred an honorary doctor of humane letters on him in 1990.

Major General John Harvey Folkerts, USAF (Ret.) (1952- )

Major General John Harvey Folkerts, bs 1974, is vice president, special operations market group at Battelle Memorial Institute. He retired from the Air Force in 2008 as director, strategic plans and programs, headquarters, Air Force Material Command, Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio. Folkerts is a command pilot with more than 3,000 flight hours. He served as an air staff action officer and in a joint, special duty assignment with the Office of the Secretary of Defense. He has commanded a flying squadron, an operations group, the 58th Special Operations Wing, the Air Force Combat Search and Rescue Wing and served as U.S. Central Command’s representative to the Pakistani military during Operation Enduring Freedom. His awards include the Defense Distinguished Service Medal, Distinguished Service Medal, Defense Superior Service Medal and the Legion of Merit with two oak leaf clusters. He holds a master’s degree from the University of Southern California, Los Angeles. At Washburn, he was in ROTC and a member of Arnold Air Society.

Robert H. Glazier (1926-2003)

Robert H. GlazierRobert H. Glazier taught chemistry for 37 years at Washburn. He joined the faculty in 1962, retired in 1993 and continued teaching as professor emeritus until 1999. Known for his focus on excellence in education, he spent most of his summers attending educational conferences in chemistry so his classroom presentations would always incorporate the most recent advances. He was a faculty adviser to pre-med students and active in the American Chemical Society, Kansas Academy of Science, Phi Lambda Upsilon, Sigma Pi and Phi Kappa Phi. He served as vice president and president of the Kansas section of the American Association of University Professors. He received a bachelor’s degree from Amherst (Mass.) College, a master’s degree from the University of New Hampshire and a doctorate from the University of Kansas.

Georgia Neese Clark Gray (1900-1995)

Georgia Neese Clark GrayGeorgia Neese Clark Gray, ba 1921, became the first female treasurer of the United States 1949-53. A member of the Democratic National Committee for 28 years, she also served on the board of the Harry S. Truman Institute and the Commission of Judicial Qualifications for the Kansas Supreme Court. She was the first female to serve as a member and chairwoman of the Washburn Board of Regents. In 1937, she became president of the Richland (Kan.) State Bank, eventually renaming it Capital City Bank and Trust and relocating it to Topeka in 1964. She was president until 1975 and chairwoman of the board 1974-78. In the 1920s, she studied theatre in New York and toured the country with stock companies for 10 years. The Washburn theatre is named in honor of her and her husband, Andrew J. Gray. She received the Washburn Alumni Distinguished Service Award in 1950 and Washburn conferred an honorary doctor of business administration on her in 1966.

William “Bill” Greiner (1954- )

William “Bill” Greiner (1954- )William “Bill” Greiner, bba 1980, is chief investment strategist for Mariner Wealth Advisors. With nearly 35 years of capital markets and investment experience, Greiner drives the economic and capital markets outlook for both Mariner Wealth Advisors and Montage Investments. As the firm’s investment strategist and spokesperson, he is sought after for his expertise and has appeared on hundreds of local and national business news outlets and been featured in such respected financial publications as Barron’s, The Wall Street Journal and Businessweek, and he also shares insights through his Forbes blog. Greiner was named Stock Market Strategist of the Year in 2005 by Businessweek. He serves as a director of the Washburn University Foundation Board of Trustees and has spoken numerous times at economics forecast breakfast lectures sponsored by the Washburn School of Business, where he and his wife, Pamela Greiner, have endowed a lecture series on economics and free enterprise. He was honored as an Alumni Fellow in 2000, and Washburn conferred an honorary doctor of commerce on him in 2015.

Robert L. "Gus" Gustavson (1937-2001)


Robert L. “Gus” Gustavson was a respected professor, mentor, adviser and student advocate who taught economics at Washburn for 20 years. His continued influence is evidenced throughout the campus in the Gustavson Faculty Mentoring Program, the School of Business Foreign Study Abroad Program and a room named in his honor in the School of Business Technology Center. The Robert L. Gustavson Above and Beyond Award, which is conferred annually by the Washburn Student Government Association, commemorates his service to students. He received the Ned Fleming Excellence in Teaching Award in 1992. Prior to Washburn, Gustavson served 22 years in the Air Force, teaching at the Air Force Academy, Colorado Springs, Colo.; Central Michigan University, Mount Pleasant; and the Industrial College of the Armed Forces, Washington, D.C. He earned a bachelor’s degree from Western Washington College of Education, Bellingham; a master’s degree from the University of California, Los Angeles; and a doctorate from the University of Colorado, Boulder.