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The Resignation of Dr. Albrecht


Herbert R. Albrecht was born in 1909 in Wisconsin.  After graduating from the University of Wisconsin (Madison) with his doctorate, he served on the faculty of Auburn University.  From there he went to Purdue and then Penn State, where he chaired the agronomy department.  His particular interest was in the breeding of legumes and turf grasses.  He authored numerous articles on agronomy, genetics, and extension work.  He was a delegate to the International Grassland Congress in New Zealand, and president of the Crop Society of America.

In 1962, Dr. Albrecht became president of North Dakota State University.  He was a very strong leader.  He worked to improve retirement and insurance benefits for faculty and staff.  He was determined to build a winning football team and laid the groundwork for future championships.  He also established strong programs in the arts, music, mathematics, speech, and theater.

Dr. Albrecht pushed for Federal research grants at a time when small institutions were overlooked.  He said he was not concerned with competing with larger universities.  He was more concerned with keeping quality faculty members who were often “stolen” by the larger schools that had more money for research.  He wrote that “we can’t all send our kids to Harvard,” and added it would be a shame to let smaller research programs to go unmanned.

On this date in 1967, the NDSU staff newsletter announced Dr. Albrecht’s resignation.  He left to become the director of the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture headquartered in Nigeria.  His new position involved development of the Institute’s research program.  Dr. Albrecht said the ultimate goal of the Institute was to reduce hunger, malnutrition, and poverty.

Dr. Albrecht said he was very grateful for the opportunity to serve the students and faculty of NDSU, and he expressed his fondness for North Dakota.  He passed away in May, 1992.

Although Dr. Albrecht was president of the University for a relatively short time, the esteem in which he was held lives on.  In September, 1992, West College Street was renamed Albrecht Boulevard in his memory, and the Albrecht Presidential Trophy is awarded to the top senior male and female student-athletes of the year.

Dakota Datebook written by Carole Butcher

It’s Happening at State. NDSU Staff Newsletter. 17 November, 1967.

NDSU Archives. "https://www.flickr.com/photos/ndsu-university-archives/sets/72157625500155442/" https://www.flickr.com/photos/ndsu-university-archives/sets/72157625500155442/ Accessed 25 August, 2014

North Dakota Farm Research.  Vol. 22, No. 2: November-December, 1961.

Albrecht, President H.R. Science . The American Association for the Advancement of Science. January 24, 1964. P. 306