Robert M. Berdahl

Robert M. Berdahl retired in July 2011 as president of the Association of American Universities in Alexandria, Virginia. He had served as its president since 2004. He previously served as University of California, Berkeley's eighth chancellor from 1997 to 2004. A career-long advocate of enhancing and humanizing undergraduate learning, Berdahl expanded the highly popular Freshman Seminars in which senior faculty teach small classes.

Prior to that, Berdahl served as president at the University of Texas at Austin from 1993 to 1997. As president of UT, Berdahl stressed undergraduate education, focusing on quality education and on university outreach to the communities, especially K–12 education in the cities.

Before assuming his post at UT, Berdahl served as vice chancellor for academic affairs at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign from 1986 to 1993. He was involved in efforts to revise undergraduate degree requirements, restructure freshman orientation, and expand academic support programs.

From 1967 until 1986, Berdahl served as a member of the history faculty at the University of Oregon. From 1981 to 1986, he was dean of the College of Arts and Sciences at Oregon.

Berdahl received his BA degree from Augustana College in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, and his MA degree from the University of Illinois. He received his PhD from the University of Minnesota in 1965 and an honorary Doctorate of Science in 1997.

He is the recipient of numerous honors and awards including the 1993 Distinguished Alumnus Award from Augustana College, a Fulbright Research Fellowship, and a National Endowment for the Humanities Independent Study and Research Fellowship. He has also served as a research associate at the Institute of Advanced Study in Princeton and at the Max Planck Institute for History in Göttingen, Germany. Berdahl is the author of one book and the co-editor of another and has written numerous articles dealing with German history.

Robert M. Berdahl

Robert M. Berdahl, President Emeritus,
Association of American Universities