Ann Die Hasselmo creates Faculty Excellence Endowment
Ann Die Hasselmo, a Lamar University distinguished alumna and a national leader and innovator in higher education, has realized a dream by creating and funding the Lamar University Faculty Excellence Endowment, LU officials announced Wednesday (April 11, 2012).
Stephen Doblin, provost and vice president for academic affairs, announced the endowment – which he described as “transformative” – during Lamar’s annual university awards ceremony, marked by introduction of the 2012 University Professor and three merit award recipients, as well as recognition of two retirees.
“Our ceremony is doubly special because of the generosity of one of our own, the 1986 Lamar Regents’ Professor, Dr. Ann Die Hasselmo,” Doblin told faculty, executives and special guests. Among those in attendance were Hasselmo’s husband, Nils, former Lamar Presidents Bill Franklin (1985-1991) and John Idoux (1991-92) and several former LU officials.
“Today and henceforth, this ceremony will be underwritten by the endowment, and the university professor title – awarded for life – will also be designated the Ann Die-Hasselmo Faculty Scholar for the subsequent year,” Doblin said.
Jerry Lin, honored Wednesday as the 2012 university professor, became the first Lamar faculty member to receive the honor.
“As a student, I benefitted from (faculty members) who gave their time to nurture me, to instruct me, to provide mentorship to me,” Hasselmo said. “They are faculty committed to excellence in education, research and student achievement.
“I believe we all have the obligation and commitment to pass on that which was given to us, so it a pleasure for me to be here and have a part in this ceremony. Congratulations to each of the award recipients today. I wish you a career that continues in the spirit of excellence for which you are honored today.”
A native of Baytown and Silsbee High School graduate, Hasselmo graduated summa cum laude from Lamar State College of Technology in 1966 with a degree in psychology. She continued her education by earning a master’s degree from the University of Houston in 1969 and a doctor of philosophy from Texas A&M University in 1977. Her graduate degrees are in counseling psychology, and she is a licensed psychologist.
She was a popular, high-energy faculty member of Lamar during the 1970s and ’80s, Doblin said. “She climbed the ranks, earned tenure, received a regents’ merit award, was Faculty Senate president, served as assistant to the executive vice president for academic and student affairs and, even more challenging, she helped design a state program known as TASP – the Texas Academic Skills Program – today known as the Texas Success Initiative.”
While at Lamar, Hasselmo was selected as one of 29 Fellows of the American Council and Education and spent the 1986-87 academic year at the College of William and Mary, working with the president and provost on a variety of academic and administrative issues.
These experiences opened doors of opportunity and, from 1988 until 1992, Hasselmo served as dean of the H. Sophie Newcomb Memorial College and associate provost of Tulane University in New Orleans. She also held chaired the Newcomb Foundation board of trustees. From Newcomb, she was chosen president of Hendrix College in Conway, Ark.
“By all measures, Hendrix thrived during Ann’s watch, and she grew into one of America’s leading college presidents,” Doblin said.
She left Hendrix in 1992 to become managing director of Academic Search Consultation Service. Today, she is president of the American Academic Leadership Institute in Washington, D.C., a non-profit organization devoted to strengthening academic leadership in all sectors of public and private higher education.
Away from work, her community and professional activities have included refugee assistance issues, intercultural councils and numerous mental health, civic and performing-arts boards. She also sits on the board of Acxiom Corp., a world leader in marketing and information management