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College of Education > News and Publications > News Items Folder > Harry L. Eberly Named Distinguished Alumnus of Penn State

Harry L. Eberly Named Distinguished Alumnus of Penn State

By Pamela Batson (March 2008)

University Park, Pa.—Harry L. Eberly, a 1945 graduate with a Bachelor of Science in Chemical Engineering from Penn State’s College of Engineering, has been named a 2008 Distinguished Alumnus. The award is the highest honor that the University bestows upon an outstanding alumna or alumnus. He was nominated by the College of Education for this award, which salutes the achievements of outstanding alumni whose “personal lives, professional achievements, and community service exemplify the objectives of their alma mater.” The University will honor Eberly along with eight other recipients at a reception and dinner on June 7.
Eberly began his career as an engineer for Western Electric from 1945 to 1949 in New York. Between 1949 and 1972 he worked for RCA, where he held various operating and staff positions in manufacturing, engineering, and business planning. He joined Telex Computer products in 1972 and held various management positions before rising to the position of executive vice president responsible for the worldwide supply operation, including research and development, service support, sales support, manufacturing, and product design. After 45-plus years in the electronics industry, he retired in March 1990.

While his degree is in engineering, his dedication to the College of Education and the field of education is significant. During the Campaign for Penn State, Eberly served as chair of the Region VII major gifts committee. He led the College of Education’s development committee from 2000 until the successful conclusion of the Grand Destiny campaign. During the Investing in People initiatives, which ended in 2007, Eberly advised the college as an emeritus member of the committee and currently serves Penn State as a presidential counselor.

“Through his generosity, leadership, and his belief in the mission of Penn State’s College of Education, Harry encourages excellence at every level of our country’s education system,” said College of Education Dean David Monk. “His selfless commitment to improving the lives of others is what makes him an inspiring leader and example to others.”

Eberly has extensive experience as a board member and advisory council member for a multitude of organizations, ranging from professional organizations in engineering to educational and community involvement in groups such as the United Way.

Together with his wife, Marion, the couple established three endowments to benefit both the students and faculty of the College of Education at Penn State: The Harry and Marion Royer Eberly Scholars, a merit-based award for the most talented students planning careers in education; The Harry and Marion Royer Eberly Faculty Fellowship in Education; and The Harry and Marion Royer Eberly Endowed Professorship in Education. These gifts have enabled the College of Education to further its important contributions to the study of educational policy, civic education, and student achievement.

Reflecting on his dedication to education, Eberly says, “For me it was evident after World War II that the K-12 sector needed help, and this has been the basis for my continuing involvement in the College of Education. Hopefully, we’re fostering the lessons we learned as students at Penn State.”

The Eberlys reside in Raleigh, North Carolina, and have two daughters
: Jenny Ellen Eberly Holmes and Susan Lynn Eberly Patrick and four grandchildren.