UF mourns the loss of former president, DeBow Freed

Pulse Staff

Former University of Findlay President Dr. DeBow Freed passed away on Saturday, Feb. 8 at the age of 94.

In an email statement University president. Dr. Katherine Fell, says Dr. Freed’s legacy at the University of Findlay is evident throughout campus and in the lives of UF students and graduates.

“He will forever be remembered for his steadfast strength, passion for student success, and attention to detail. His leadership helped propel the University forward in experiential learning, undergraduate research, the arts, new academic programs, building additions and improvements, and beautiful landscaping.”

Freed served at the University of Findlay from 2003 to 2010 when he retired. Freed is credited with stabilizing the institution financially and improving campus morale and the town and gown relationship the University had with the City of Findlay according to a University news release.

“From 2005 to 2010 the number of full-time faculty increased from 155 to 195 and investments were also made in laboratories, experiential work, technology, and academic support. The Doctor of Pharmacy Program was added and the Physical Therapy Program was elevated to the doctoral level. Continued financial stability also allowed the University to acquire needed facilities and make necessary developments including an addition to the Mazza Museum, the renovation of the former Owens Community College campus, the Rieck Center for Habitat Studies acquisition and construction of the Beckett Animal Science Building.”

Dr. Ron Tulley, dean of the College of Arts, Humanities, and Social Sciences stated his admiration and memories of Dr. Freed in an email to CAHSS.

“Most of us would need three lifetimes to accomplish what Dr. Freed did in one. In an age of hyperbole, this is no exaggeration. Before serving as UF’s president for seven years, he served as ONU’s president for 20 years, and president of Monmouth College before that,” Tulley said. “He was also a college dean, a professor of physics at West Point, and an Army veteran who served his country for 23 years helping to rebuild several nations after WWII. He was truly a servant leader, a champion of higher education, a generous benefactor, and a compassionate Christian.” 

According to the University website, in 2010, “Freed was awarded an Honorary Doctorate in Humane Letters from the University of Findlay, and he and his wife, Catherine also established the Dr. and Mrs. DeBow Freed Contemporary Christian Lecture Series Endowment, which welcomes nationally known speakers exploring Christian responses to contemporary issues. DeBow Freed remained President Emeritus of University of Findlay until his death.”

Dr. Freed will be buried at West Point National Cemetery with Mrs. Freed and DeBow II.

The College First Church of God will hold a video remembrance memorial from March 3 from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m.


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