David Dodds Henry Lectures in Higher Education UIC Home

Stanley O. IkenberryStanley O. Ikenberry

Stanley O. Ikenberry advises on higher education projects and provides academic management and program analysis to colleges and universities.

Dr. Ikenberry is the former president of the University of Illinois and served as the tenth president of the American Council on Education (ACE). An independent, nonprofit association founded in 1918, ACE is the major representative voice for higher education in the United States.

During his tenure as ACE’s President, Dr. Ikenberry revamped ACE’s internal organization structure and strengthened considerably the cohesion within the higher education community. Communication links with campuses were energized as Higher Education and National Affairs was moved to an electronic format. A new weekly Washington update service for college and university presidents was also launched – President to President – as was a new four-color ACE magazine, "The Presidency." Dr. Ikenberry led the higher education community through the 1998 Reauthorization of the Higher Education Act and the passage of the Clinton administration’s Hope Scholarship and Lifetime Learning tax credits. Federal funding for the Pell Grant was increased by 50 per cent during his tenure. Federal research support increased even more sharply. Dr. Ikenberry led a coalition of more than 1,200 colleges and universities and 30 higher education associations to increase public understanding of how to plan and pay for college. He also led a crusade to move the education of teachers higher on the agenda of college and university presidents.

Dr. Ikenberry is also President of the Board of Overseers, TIAA-CREF, the leading retirement system for college and university employees in the United States. TIAA offers an array of asset investment classes (equity and fixed income holdings) and services to the academic community and the general public. The Board of Overseers monitors TIAA-CREF and has the legal responsibility for the election of the TIAA Board of Trustees.

With a sixteen year tenure, Dr. Ikenberry was the one of longest serving presidents in the history of the University of Illinois. Shortly after arrival in 1979 he led the consolidation of the University’s Medical Center and Chicago Circle campuses to form the current University of Illinois at Chicago, now the largest and most comprehensive research university campus in metropolitan Chicago. In Urbana Champaign Dr. Ikenberry led several major academic initiatives, including the creation of the Beckman Institute for Advanced Science and Technology and the National Center for Supercomputing Applications. Dr. Ikenberry led the University’s first major capital campaign and launched a second campaign in the late ‘80s to raise in excess of a billion dollars. The quality and diversity of the Illinois student body increased significantly during his tenure with his creation of the President’s Scholars Program. Dr. Ikenberry left the University presidency in 1995 and assumed the presidency of ACE the following year. He returned to the University in his current capacity in September, 2001.

After stepping down as the University of Illinois’ 14th president, Dr. Ikenberry assumed the role of Regent Professor and President Emeritus of the University. After returning from ACE, he resumed his role as professor. He maintains an office in the College of Education on the Urbana Champaign campus and also holds an appointment with the University’s Institute of Government and Public Affairs. He currently serves as an advisor to the University with the aim of energizing and mobilizing the resources of the University’s three campuses to strengthen the quality of education at all levels in Illinois. Dr. Ikenberry is active as a national speaker and consultant. He serves as advisor to doctoral students in the field of higher education and teaches courses on higher education policy and leadership.

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