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William L. Boyd, Batschelet Chair Professor of Educational Leadership, Passes Away

Obituary for Bill Boyd

boyd.smlUNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - William Lowe Boyd, Batschelet Chair Professor of Educational Leadership at The Pennsylvania State University, died Sept. 21, 2008 at his home.

Boyd was a renowned researcher and educator in the field of educational leadership, with a specialty in education policy and politics as well as educational administration.

Boyd served on the faculty at Penn State for 28 years. He was editor of the American Journal of Education, published more than 140 articles, and co-edited 17 books. He served as president of the Politics of Education Association, as an officer of the American Educational Research Association, and as a Fulbright scholar in Australia and England. He also was a professor or visiting scholar at eleven universities in the United States and around the world, including the University of Rochester, the University of Washington, Monash and Deakin Universities in Australia, Gothenburg and Umea Universities in Sweden, the University of British Columbia, the University of Wales, the Universities of Liverpool and Warwick in England, and the Chinese University of Hong Kong.

In 2002 Boyd received the Roald F. Campbell Lifetime Achievement Award from the University Council of Educational Administration for his longtime distinguished service as a teacher and researcher in the field of educational administration, his superior contributions to the field’s body of knowledge, and his recognized leadership efforts. In 2003, he received the Career Achievement Award from Penn State’s College of Education. In 2007 he received the initial Student Mentorship Award from the Penn State Department of Education Policy Studies.

As a practitioner Boyd served as an elementary and high school teacher, as assistant to the principal of the University of Chicago High School (part of the famous Laboratory School founded by John Dewey), as assistant to the dean of the graduate school of education and liaison to the Chicago Public Schools at the University of Chicago, as professor-in-charge of the Educational Leadership Program at Penn State, and in a variety of leadership roles for almost 50 summers in the educational programs at the Interlochen Center for the Arts in Michigan. His lifelong commitment to improving the quality and equity of education in this country and around the world is carried forward by his friends, colleagues, students, and family.

Boyd was a graduate of The University of Tennessee (B.S., 1957), Northwestern University (M.M., 1961), and The University of Chicago (Ph.D., 1973).

Boyd was born Sept. 11, 1935 in Louisville, Ky. to Norris and Helen Boyd. He is survived by his wife of 50 years, Emily Remine Boyd; children Stephen Norris Boyd, Katherine Shields Boyd, and Anne Boyd Rabkin; son-in-law Brian Rabkin; and a granddaughter, Helen Ila Rabkin.

Bill and Emily met as undergraduate musicians in the Knoxville Symphony Orchestra. Bill was a French hornist and shared his lifelong love of music with all that he knew.

A Celebration of Life will be held at Interlochen next summer. Memorial donations, in lieu of flowers, may be made to the Educational Leadership Program, 207 Rackley Building, The Pennsylvania State University, University Park, Pa. 16802, or to the Minnesota Building or Braeside Preservation Fund, Interlochen Center of the Arts, Interlochen, Mich. 49643.