Donald Schmeltekopf Named Provost Emeritus At BaylorMay 29, 2003
by Alan Hunt
Baylor University's retiring provost and vice president for academic affairs, Dr. Donald D. Schmeltekopf, has been named Provost Emeritus by Baylor President Robert B. Sloan Jr.
Sloan said he is pleased that Schmeltekopf will continue his efforts in Christian leadership development on Baylor's behalf. "Don Schmeltekopf has been a constant inspiration in his promotion of Baylor as a leading Christian university," he said.
Schmeltekopf also has accepted a two-year appointment as The Hazel and Harry Chavanne Professor of Christian Ethics in Business at Baylor's Hankamer School of Business. He also will teach an ethics course at Truett Seminary, as well as a course in higher education administration in the School of Education. He will assume his duties June 1, and said he looks forward to "these new, exciting challenges" he is undertaking on Baylor's behalf.
"I am immensely pleased to be named Provost Emeritus of Baylor," Schmeltekopf said. "This is a great honor for me personally, and I am deeply grateful to President Sloan for his recognition of my service to the university in this fashion. In addition, the appointment to the Chavanne Professorship is a marvelous opportunity for me to be re-engaged with the field of ethics, and Christian ethics in particular. I look forward to working with Dean (Terry) Maness and our colleagues in the Hankamer School of Business. I am genuinely excited about these and other new opportunities here at Baylor."
"Ethics has become an increasingly important aspect of business education," Maness said. "I am looking forward to having Dr. Don Schmeltekopf join us for the next two years to further develop our emphasis in Christian business ethics."
In the nine months since he announced his plans to retire, many tributes have been paid to Schmeltekopf's service as provost. Dr. David Lyle Jeffrey, Distinguished Professor of Literature and Humanities and senior vice provost, will succeed Schmeltekopf as provost on June 1.
Describing Schmeltekopf's retirement as "a bittersweet moment for me personally and for Baylor University," Sloan said Schmeltekopf had guided Baylor's academic "ship of state through what has perhaps been the most significant period in the university's modern era." Sloan added, "Beyond his professional importance to this institution, though, is his personal impact on my administration, and indeed on my life."
During Schmeltekopf's 12-year tenure as provost, Baylor created four new academic divisions - George W. Truett Theological Seminary, the School of Engineering and Computer Science, the School of Social Work and the Honors College; added doctoral programs in biology, church-state studies, sociology, philosophy and mathematics; and established the Baylor Interdisciplinary Core program. In addition, participation in international studies programs has grown significantly, the university's faculty has grown from 580 to more than 750, faculty research and scholarly activity has increased, the University Scholars and Distinguished Professors program was initiated, and faculty compensation has improved to rank in the top half of Big 12 institutions.
Schmeltekopf earned his bachelor's degree from Baylor in 1962 and holds a master's of divinity degree from Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary and his doctorate from Drew University. He also did post-graduate study at Princeton University. Prior to joining the Baylor administration in 1990 as vice provost, he served as vice president for academic affairs, dean of the faculty and provost at Mars Hill College in North Carolina. He has been a program officer for the National Endowment for the Humanities and has served on the philosophy faculty at Union College in New Jersey.
He and his wife, Judy, a graduate of Texas Christian University, have four children: William, Elizabeth, Andrew and Stephen; and three grandchildren.