College of Liberal Arts News
Professor Jerry Gray Selected for Endowed Chair of Economics
Willamette University Professor Jerry Gray was awarded the Peter C. and Bonnie S. Kremer Chair of Economics, a privately endowed professorship awarded to a scholar who is an experienced and dedicated teacher.
"With this position, I feel a sense of excitement - and responsibility - to ensure that Willamette's students are able to think critically about economics," said Gray. "Understanding economics is an essential part of a robust liberal arts education."
Named Oregon's 2005 Professor of the Year by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching and the Council for Advancement and Support of Education, students and faculty alike praise Gray for his enthusiasm, dedication and humor. He is well known on the Willamette campus for the countless hours he spends outside the classroom helping students learn about economics.
"There is no substitution for time or patience," said Gray. "I try to illustrate concepts with experiences from my own life or by using everyday examples."
"Jerry is simply remarkable in his ability to translate the most complex and abstract concepts into terms anyone can understand," said David Douglass, Interim Dean of the College of Liberal Arts. "The Kremer Chair is fitting recognition of his talents as a teacher."
"We are honored by the Kremers' generosity and deeply grateful for their recognition of the importance of excellent teaching," said Interim President Larry D. Large. "The many benefits of this endowed chair will be realized now and for many generations of students to come."
About the Peter C. and Bonnie S. Kremer Chair of Economics
The $1.5 million endowment was established by a Willamette alumni couple, Peter '62 and Bonnie (Scott) Kremer '62. Peter majored in economics at Willamette and earned his master's degree in business administration from Stanford. Bonnie graduated from Willamette with an English degree. She reflected, "Our experience at Willamette has given us both a good foundation, and that's something we want to support.
Governor Sends WU Alumnus to Work on I-5 Bridge Project
Oregon Gov. Ted Kulongoski recently assigned Willamette alumnus Hans Bernard '05 to attempt to win agreement on a plan for an Interstate 5 bridge over the Columbia River.
Officials have been working for years on plans to replace the bridge, but they have been unable to resolve important differences on issues such as how many lanes the new bridge should have and whether to charge tolls.
Bernard, who majored in politics at Willamette, is Kulongoski's deputy legislative director. He will move to the Oregon Department of Transportation's Portland region to work on the project.