Lake Erie College loses a good friend
Robert Dickinson, a longtime leader and friend of the College, passed away in Vero Beach, Fla., July 16, 2008, at age 91.
Dickinson was a member of the Lake Erie College Board of Directors from 1970-88 and served as chairman of the board from 1983-88. He remained active as an emeritus director until his death.
Dickinson became involved with Lake Erie in the 1950s, when he and two of his daughters began riding under the tutelage of Laddie Andahazy, founder of the College’s equestrian program. It was at this time that the College acquired the Morley farm – Dickinson and his daughters rode there along with the children of Paul Weaver, who served as president from 1952-77.
He was instrumental in the building of the George M. Humphrey Equestrian Center in 1971 – this state-of-the-art facility was the foundation for the College’s academic majors in equine studies and prestige in the equine world. In 1987 he gave approximately eight acres of property in Chardon, Ohio as an important part of the College’s capital campaign.
Dickinson endowed a scholarship fund at the College in 1984. The Robert Dickinson Scholarship is awarded each year to an equestrian student with good academic standing who demonstrates financial need.
In recognition of his leadership and support, he was named a Sesquicentennial Fellow by the College in 2007. President Michael Victor and Vice President for Institutional Advancement Scott Evans presented Dickinson with his sesquicentennial medallion when they visited him in Florida in March of that year.
He was recently honored as a legendary leader of the Lake Erie College Equine Program at the 40th annual Prix de Villes in April 2008.
John F. Turben, who succeeded Dickinson in 1988 as chairman of the board, spoke highly of his influence and accomplishments. “Bob was a great friend and mentor – I was honored to succeed him in this important position,” Turben said. “His leadership role at Lake Erie was vital in the transformation of the College in the early 1980s. He never lost his interest and enthusiasm for the school.”
Robert Dickinson made a tremendous difference at Lake Erie College. He will be missed.