Former Lyon College President Dr. Walter Roettger passed away on Sunday (January 29) in Syracuse, New York. Roettger served as president of Lyon College from 1998 to 2009.
Under Roettger’s leadership, Lyon gained national recognition for its academic excellence, increased enrollment, added new academic majors, constructed several new buildings including the Derby Center for Science and Mathematics, finished a campaign for the capital and launched a On the other hand, it increased the size of its faculty and created new varsity athletic programs, according to the school.
During its 11 years at the college, Lyons faculty were named Arkansas Professors of the Year nine times. She has also strengthened the college’s ties to the community starting with the College Opportunity Program, which Lyon created with the University of Arkansas Community College at Batesville (UACCB). Lyons has since expanded this partnership to other two-year public colleges in the region, including Ozarka College, Arkansas State University at Newport, and Arkansas State University at Beebe.
While president of Lyon, Roettger served on numerous local, state and national councils. He served as chairman of the board of the Batesville-area Chamber of Commerce and was, among others, a board member of the Batesville Economic Development Foundation.
Roettger received his bachelor’s degree from Stanford University and his doctorate in political science from the University of Colorado. You have taught at numerous institutions including Central College in Iowa, Emporia State University in Kansas and Drake University in Iowa. Beginning in 1982, he began an administrative career in higher education that led him to leadership positions at the University of Hartford, Bryant University, and Westminster College in Fulton, Mo., where he served as vice president and faculty dean .
Since retiring from Lyons, he has served as president and vice president of academic affairs at SUNY Oswego and educational leadership consultant to the Registry of Presidents of Colleges and Universities.
Roettger was born in Champaign, Illinois, where his father, a former major league baseball player with the St. Louis Cardinals, was the head baseball coach at the University of Illinois. Roettger is survived by his wife, Margaret “Peggy” Roettger, a former director of pupils and parental services in Lyon, and son Dan.