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Wendell Nedderman '49 May 13, 2019 12:04 PM updated: May 16, 2019 9:22 AM

Moore Funeral Home obituary
Arlington, TX
817-275-2711

Wendell Herman Nedderman
OCTOBER 31, 1921 – MAY 8, 2019

endell Herman Nedderman, born October 31, 1921, in southern Iowa, died on May 8, 2019 in Frisco, Texas, due to reasons incident to old age. He was raised on a farm by loving parents, Walter Herman Nedderman and Fern Gray Nedderman. His first eight grades of school were in a rural one-room school house where there was emphasis on fundamentals, including reading, writing, arithmetic, and spelling. There was also great emphasis on the importance of order, discipline, and responsibility. He graduated from Lovilia High School in 1939 as class valedictorian. His formative years in the decade of the 1930s were marked by drought, dust bowl, and the Great Depression, all of which provided incentives to leave the farm. After a freshman year at Albia Junior College, he entered Iowa State University in 1940. He graduated in 1943 with honors and a degree in civil engineering. After graduation from Iowa State, Wendell enlisted in the Navy and was sent to Reserve Midshipman’s School at Annapolis where, after four months, he was commissioned an officer with the rank of ensign and assigned to a destroyer, the USS Patterson. Most of his three years in the Navy were in the Pacific where he was in significant combat, including campaigns in the Marianas, Philippines, Iwo Jima, and Okinawa. He earned eight battle stars. He joined the civil engineering department at Texas A&M in 1947 as instructor and rose to full professor within 10 years. During his 12 years with A&M, he earned a masters degree at A&M and a Ph.D. at Iowa State. Wendell and family moved to Arlington in 1959 where he was the founding dean of the College of Engineering at Arlington State College, a position he held for 10 years. After four years as vice president of academic affairs, he was appointed UT Arlington president in 1972, a position he held until 1992. His tenure as president was marked by dramatic expansion of the university’s size, scope, and ambitions. After retirement, he taught part-time in the College of Engineering until 2004. By student vote, he received the College of Engineering’s “Teacher Excellence Award” in 1997. Wendell was a registered professional engineer in Iowa, Louisiana, and Texas. He was a consultant to Gulf Oil Corporation for over 30 years, and was a pioneer in offshore platform design in the 1950s and 1960s. He was active in many professional and community organizations, including the First Christian Church of Arlington where he held virtually every layman position over a 40 year period. Wendell received numerous awards including: the Texas A&M faculty “Distinguished Achievement Award,” the Anson Marston gold medal from Iowa State for “achievement in the field of engineering,” and the Mirabeau B. Lamar Medal from the Association of Texas Colleges and Universities for “leadership in learning.” An endowed professorship in the UT Arlington College of Engineering bears his name. In December, 1947, in College Station, Texas, he married Betty Ann Vezey, the daughter of a highly-regarded A&M physics professor. Wendell was preceded in death by his beloved wife of 67 happy years, Betty Ann Nedderman in 2015. He is survived by their four sons and three daughters-in-law: Howard and Terri, John, Jeff and Faye, and Eric and Kimberly. There are many grandchildren and great-grandchildren. One sister, Jean Henderson, lives in Ottumwa, Iowa. The funeral will take place at First Christian Church of Arlington, 910 S. Collins St. Arlington, TX 76010 on Saturday, May 18, 2019 at 12:00 p.m. Burial will immediately follow the service in a family plot at Moore Memorial Gardens, Arlington, Texas.

DONATIONS
UTA -Endowed Nedderman Professorship


Services
18
MAY
Funeral Service
12:00 pm

FIRST CHRISTIAN CHURCH OF ARLINGTON
910 S Collins St
Arlington, Texas 76010
_______________________________________________________________________________________________________
Published in (Fort Worth) Star-Telegram on May 16, 2019

Wendell Herman Nedderman(1921 - 2019)
Wendell Herman Nedderman FRISCO -- Wendell Herman Nedderman, born October 31, 1921, in southern Iowa, died on May 8, 2019 in Frisco, Texas, due to reasons incident to old age. SERVICE: The funeral will take place at First Christian Church of Arlington, 910 S. Collins St. Arlington, Texas 76010 on Saturday, May 18, 2019 at 12 p.m. Burial will immediately follow the service in a family plot at Moore Memorial Gardens, Arlington, Texas. He was raised on a farm by loving parents, Walter Herman Nedderman and Fern Gray Nedderman. His first eight grades of school were in a rural one-room school house where there was emphasis on fundamentals, including reading, writing, arithmetic, and spelling. There was also great emphasis on the importance of order, discipline, and responsibility. He graduated from Lovilia High School in 1939 as class valedictorian. His formative years in the decade of the 1930s were marked by drought, dust bowl, and the Great Depression, all of which provided incentives to leave the farm. After a freshman year at Albia Junior College, he entered Iowa State University in 1940. He graduated in 1943 with honors and a degree in civil engineering. After graduation from Iowa State, Wendell enlisted in the Navy and was sent to Reserve Midshipman's School at Annapolis where, after four months, he was commissioned an officer with the rank of ensign and assigned to a destroyer, the USS Patterson. Most of his three years in the Navy were in the Pacific where he was in significant combat, including campaigns in the Marianas, Philippines, Iwo Jima, and Okinawa. He earned eight battle stars. He joined the civil engineering department at Texas A&M in 1947 as instructor and rose to full professor within 10 years. During his 12 years with A&M, he earned a masters degree at A&M and a Ph.D. at Iowa State. Wendell and family moved to Arlington in 1959 where he was the founding dean of the College of Engineering at Arlington State College, a position he held for 10 years. After four years as vice president of academic affairs, he was appointed UT Arlington president in 1972, a position he held until 1992. His tenure as president was marked by dramatic expansion of the university's size, scope, and ambitions. After retirement, he taught part-time in the College of Engineering until 2004. By student vote, he received the College of Engineering's "Teacher Excellence Award" in 1997. Wendell was a registered professional engineer in Iowa, Louisiana, and Texas. He was a consultant to Gulf Oil Corporation for over 30 years, and was a pioneer in offshore platform design in the 1950s and 1960s. He was active in many professional and community organizations, including the First Christian Church of Arlington where he held virtually every layman position over a 40 year period. Wendell received numerous awards including: the Texas A&M faculty "Distinguished Achievement Award," the Anson Marston gold medal from Iowa State for "achievement in the field of engineering," and the Mirabeau B. Lamar Medal from the Association of Texas Colleges and Universities for "leadership in learning." An endowed professorship in the UT Arlington College of Engineering bears his name. In December, 1947, in College Station, Texas, he married Betty Ann Vezey, the daughter of a highly-regarded A&M physics professor. Wendell was preceded in death by his beloved wife of 67 happy years, Betty Ann Nedderman in 2015. SURVIVORS: He is survived by their four sons and three daughters-in-law: Howard and Terri, John, Jeff and Faye, and Eric and Kimberly. There are many grandchildren and great-grandchildren. One sister, Jean Henderson, lives in Ottumwa, Iowa.


Funeral Home
Moore Funeral Home
1219 North Davis Drive Arlington, TX 76012
(817) 275-2711
_______________________________________________________________________________________________________
https://www.uta.edu/news/releases/2019/05/nedderman.php

Former UTA president was a “giant among university leaders”
Thursday, May 9, 2019 • Media Contact: UT Arlington Media Relations

Dr. Wendell Nedderman, who was president of The University of Texas at Arlington for 20 years, died on Wednesday, May 8. He was 97.

Wendell Nedderman served as president of UTA for two decades.

As the leader of UTA from 1972-92, Nedderman was a tireless advocate for the University and its students who frequently spoke of UTA as a “positive-slope institution.” It reflected his belief that everything about the University—including its enrollment, funding, graduation rates, degree programs and overall growth and stature—was on a permanent upward trajectory.

“Someday, we’re going to be so darn big and so darn good, we can’t be ignored,” he said.

Nedderman was the founding dean of the College of Engineering, arriving on campus in 1959 convinced that what was then Arlington State College was destined to grow, given its location between Dallas and Fort Worth. After a decade under his leadership, the engineering college became one of the largest and best in the Southwest.

In the late 1960s, he served in a number of key positions, sometimes simultaneously. He was dean of engineering (1959-69), vice president for research and graduate affairs (1967-68), graduate school administrator (1967-69) and vice president for academic affairs (1968-72). In 1972 he became acting president, and in 1974, president.

During his two-decade tenure as president of UTA, enrollment increased from approximately 14,000 students to more than 25,000, including a four-fold increase in graduate students. As president, Nedderman oversaw the construction of or major additions to more than 20 buildings, while adding approximately 60 bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degree programs.

Wendell Nedderman and his granddaughter, Laura, who graduated from the UTA College of Engineering in 2017.

Under his leadership, UTA added the School of Nursing and the School of Architecture and Environmental Design, now known as the College of Nursing and Health Innovation and the College of Architecture, Planning and Public Affairs. In 1987, he helped establish what today is known as the University of Texas at Arlington Research Institute on 18 acres along the Trinity River in east Fort Worth.

He also oversaw the project to lower Cooper Street, adding pedestrian bridges over the busy roadway to better connect the east and west sides of campus and improve safety for students.

“I have had a unique experience…to participate and observe in the evolution of UTA,” he said in 2016.

UTA President Vistasp Karbhari said that Nedderman set the foundation and trajectory for the transition from a small college to one of the largest and best-reputed universities in Texas.

“President Nedderman was an inspirational leader, far ahead of his times in his vision for the University of Texas at Arlington, and his passion and dedication to excellence and student success set the standard and bar high for all those who follow him,” Karbhari said. “Our University is where it is today—a national powerhouse and a leader in teaching, research and outreach—because of the path that he set and the battles he fought for UTA. His legacy will be felt for years to come and he will always be remembered as a Giant among University leaders.

“Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and all those who held him in their hearts. Lisa and I were honored and privileged to have known him and will always remember his graciousness, his kindness, constant support and encouragement. Rest in peace, President Nedderman—your work and legacy lives on in the hearts of the thousands whose lives you touched, the success you enabled in others and in the University you built.”

State Sen. Royce West of Dallas said Nedderman was a crucial figure in UTA’s history.

“President Nedderman was a transformative leader for UTA and a mentor, advisor and friend to many of its students,” said West, a UTA alumnus. “I count myself fortunate to have had our paths cross.”

Nedderman often referred to himself as “an old country boy” from rural Iowa whose father raised Hereford cattle, hogs and sheep. His own experiences as an Iowa farm boy turned doctoral student transformed him into a lifelong champion for improving access to a college education for tens of thousands of students, especially for transfer and first-generation college students.

He famously toured the campus in a wheelchair to experience first-hand the accessibility challenges faced by students with mobility issues. It was more than a publicity stunt. It led to significant modifications across UTA and an award from Texas Gov. Dolph Briscoe Jr. in recognition of UTA’s efforts to improve campus accessibility for people with disabilities.

“I think there was always an atmosphere of acceptability or friendship or support on the campus of The University of Texas at Arlington,” Nedderman said in a 2014 interview. “I always took pride in that.”

Nedderman was known for his gentle touch. For his first 17 years as president, he didn’t have a reserved parking space, eventually acquiescing to an advisor who insisted the president have a designated spot. He once told incoming UTA students that their time in college should be spent learning, expanding their intellectual horizons, maintaining physical fitness, developing social skills, building friendships and, lastly, having fun.

“And please notice the order of my suggestions,” he said.

Throughout his career, Nedderman championed the city of Arlington, and UTA’s role as both an asset and resource for the North Texas region.

“One of our greatest attributes is our strategic location in the heart of a booming Metroplex,” he said in 1980. “We are accessible to people. We regard the great community around us as our laboratory—something to be interacted with, something to add relevance to our academic efforts; something to serve and something to draw strength from.”

Nedderman received numerous awards throughout his career, including Engineer of the Year from the Fort Worth chapter of the Texas Society of Professional Engineers; Citation for Service from the Arlington Chamber of Commerce; Service to People Award, Texas section, from the American Society of Civil Engineers; and Distinguished Honorary Alumnus from the UTA Alumni Association.

He served on many boards, including the Arlington Independent School District, Arlington Memorial Hospital, Arlington Chamber of Commerce and the Texas Council on Economic Education. He also served as president of the Metropolitan Tarrant County United Way, the Arlington Kiwanis Club and the North Texas Higher Education Authority.

Nedderman was born Oct. 31, 1921, near Lovilia, Iowa. The man who would help build one of the largest universities in Texas began his education as a boy in a one-room schoolhouse. He eventually graduated first in his high school class and enrolled in Iowa State University’s civil engineering program.

Nedderman attended college on what he says was a “shoestring budget,” but he was determined to finish and, he said, “willing to do anything that it took to get away from the farm and graduate from Iowa State (University).”

He did so in 1943 in the middle of World War II and then promptly joined the Navy Reserve. As a commissioned officer aboard the destroyer USS Patterson, he earned eight battle stars and three campaign ribbons. Before he was 23, Nedderman had fought in the Marianas, the Philippines and at Iwo Jima and Okinawa.

After the war, he moved to College Station, Texas, where he became an instructor in civil engineering. He also met Betty (Vezey) Nedderman and married her in 1947, a union that lasted 67 years until her death in 2015.

He earned a master’s of civil engineering from Texas A&M in 1949. The couple briefly moved back to Iowa, where Nedderman earned his PhD in civil engineering from Iowa State in 1951.

Back at Texas A&M, he rose to the rank of professor before being recruited to become the founding dean of engineering at Arlington State College in 1959. Its first day as a four-year college coincided with his arrival as dean of engineering, he recounted in a 2013 interview. For the next decade, Nedderman helped grow the engineering school into one of the Southwest’s best, before becoming president.

In 1992, he was named president emeritus and received the Mirabeau B. Lamar Award for leadership in learning by the Association of Texas Colleges and Universities. He also continued teaching in the College of Engineering.

In a 2007 interview, Nedderman said the hallmark of his presidency was a philosophy of pride and optimism.

“You have this diverse group of alumni, legislators, regents, faculty, staff, students, all sometimes tugging in different directions,” he said. “You have to pull them all together with a feeling of great pride in your university. And I think there is no substitute for taking pride in your university and exhibiting great enthusiasm.”

Nedderman retired to Frisco, Texas, where he lived with his son Eric and his family. His wife, Betty, preceded him in death. The couple had four children and many grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

© 2019 The University of Texas at Arlington
701 S. Nedderman Drive • Arlington, TX 76019 • 817-272-2011
_______________________________________________________________________________________________________
Moore Funeral Home death notice
Arlington, TX
817-275-2711

Wendell H. Nedderman
OCTOBER 31, 1921 – MAY 8, 2019

Wendell H. Nedderman was born on October 31, 1921 and passed away on May 8, 2019.

Services
NO SERVICES ARE SCHEDULED AT THIS TIME.


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