Sandy Boyd Obituary: 95-Year-Old Sandy Boyd, Former UI President Whose Tenure Changed The University, Has Died!

Sandy Boyd Obituary: The University of Iowa’s second-longest-serving president during the post-war era, Willard “Sandy” Boyd, passed away on Tuesday.

Boyd, a 95-year-old attorney from the Twin Cities, first came to Iowa in 1954 to teach law. In 1964, he was elected president of the institution, and in 1969, he assumed that position again.

“Sandy was beloved by the entire university community, and he will always remain one of the major figures in the University of Iowa’s history. His impact and influence are deeply embedded in the character and excellence of this institution to this day,” UI President Barbara Wilson said in a statement released Tuesday.

He became president and presided until 1981. He is credited with “maintaining conversation” with student activists during the turbulent 1970s. None of the subsequent seven occupants of the position has been able to replicate that 12-year tenure.

Sandy Boyd Obituary
Sandy Boyd Obituary

“He represented who and what we are as an institution with integrity, grace, compassion, humor, and humanity, and he changed the university — and our society — for the better in profound and lasting ways,” Wilson said.

Under Boyd’s leadership, the University of Iowa underwent a dramatic transformation, tripling its undergraduate enrollment to 25,000 students. He also planned the construction of Carver-Hawkeye Arena. He oversaw the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics’ dramatic expansion to include the Roy J. Carver Pavilion and what is now known as Boyd Tower.

Boyd, born in 1927, was also a young law professor who was instrumental in starting the University of Iowa Foundation, which serves as a platform for charitable donations.

Exists anything after Iowa? Boyd responded to it for 15 years after leaving his position as UI president in Chicago, where he oversaw the esteemed Field Museum.

Then, in 1996, after leaving the museum, he returned to Iowa City and resumed his teaching career. He did so for nearly two more decades at the university’s highly regarded law school. He took another hiatus by acting as the university’s interim president from 2002 to 2003.

According to a statement from the institution, he continued to be involved with the law school even after he retired in 2015. According to a statement issued by the university, he passed away on Tuesday in Iowa City due to unidentified causes.

Susan Kuehn Boyd, their three children, Thomas Boyd of St. Paul, Willard Lee “Bill” Boyd III of Des Moines, and Elizabeth “Betsy” Boyd of Iowa City, as well as seven grandchildren, survive him. Keep yourself updated with all the latest news from our website and get all the recent updates.

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