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Endowed Chairs

At UW-Green Bay, endowed chairs allow the University to hire established scholars with national and international reputations. The faculty members who are chairholders receive recognition for personal achievements in their fields, and the satisfaction that the University supports research and quality teaching in their discipline. Students are challenged and guided by exposure to the highest quality academic leadership.

The University’s first named endowed chair was established in 2003 to honor John P. Blair and his impact on the national broadcasting landscape.

In 2009, it was announced that a generous contribution from the Cofrin family would transition the Cofrin Professorship in Management to the Austin E. Cofrin Endowed Chair in Business beginning in 2014.

Cofrin Endowed Chair of Business

The Austin E. Cofrin Professorship in Management was established in 2005 by Dr. David Cofrin, his wife, Mary Ann and the Cofrin children; in honor of Dr. Cofrin’s father, Austin E. Cofrin. The endowment was later transitioned to Austin E. Cofrin Endowed Chair of Business in 2014.

In 1919, when he was 36, Mr. Cofrin, along with a few dozen employees, founded Fort Howard Paper Company, a small paper company on the west shore of the Fox River in Green Bay. His fierce independence, rugged individualism, resourcefulness, leadership and drive set the character of the company that prospered and grew to be one of the largest tissue products paper companies in the world. The company today carries the Georgia Pacific name and is a part of the Koch Industries Company.

The classic self-made man, Mr. Cofrin built an organization that served as a model for others as it was lean, focused and devoted to a core business. Its efficiencies were legendary. The personal qualities that Mr. Cofrin instilled in his organization in its early decades were evident to all: independence, self-sufficiency, pragmatism, commitment to employees and plain hard work.

Mr. Cofrin, known affectionately as A.E. by his employees and business associates, served as president of the company until 1960, when he passed the mantle of leadership to his son, John. Throughout his career, he was an unpretentious, hands-on manager, not afraid to dirty his hands and work directly with mill personnel to deal with problems. His commitment to his company was total, and it was not uncommon for him to sleep on a cot in the basement of the mill to be near the action.

Mr. Cofrin died in 1980 at age 96.

The award recognizes and gives support for a professor who has demonstrated a productive commitment to scholarship and/or outreach and whose work exemplifies the spirit and mission of the University of Wisconsin - Green Bay. The Austin E. Cofrin Professorship is specified to those who work directly with business leaders, business development or UW-Green Bay students who later enter the business world.

Austin E. Cofrin Endowed Chair of Business Honoree

2014 - David J. Radosevich
Degrees: B.A. in psychology, Western Maryland College
Ph.D. in industrial/organizational psychology, University at Albany, State University of New York
Associate Prof. of Management

Austin E. Cofrin Professorship in Management Honoree

2009 - John Stoll
Degrees: B.S., University of Wisconsin-Green Bay
M.S., University of Kentucky
Ph.D., University of Kentucky
Professor of Public and Environmental Affairs

Blair Endowed Chair in Communication

The John P. Blair Endowed Chair in Communication was established in 2003 through a generous contribution by Mrs. Dorothy Blair and the Blair Foundation. The Blair Chair honors the nationally prominent role the late John Blair played in the radio and television advertising industry.

John Blair, a native of Chicago, worked in newspaper advertising sales and as an agency executive following his graduation from UW-Madison. With money borrowed from his life insurance policy, he founded the partnership that in 1935 would become known as John Blair & Company.

He was an early and influential promoter of radio advertising. In 1948, after greatly expanding his radio station sales representative business, he established the industry’s first agency of its kind devoted to selling spot television advertising. With offices in most major American cities, John Blair & Company became the representative for 120 TV stations and 196 radio stations. The company also owned printing operations and the largest direct mail business in the country. John Blair passed away in 1983.

John and Dorothy Blair were early supporters of UW-Green Bay with an interest in the environment. They received the Chancellor’s Award of Merit in 1972. Dorothy passed away in 2008.

The Blair gift reflects their affection for UW-Green Bay and the Green Bay area, the quality of UW-Green Bay’s undergraduate programs in communications and the region’s strength as a communication and media market.

2012 - Phillip Clampitt
Degrees: B.A., Oklahoma
M.S., Southwest Texas State
Ph.D., Kansas
Chair of the Communication,
Professor - PR, Organizational Communication, Electronic Media

2005 - Timothy Meyer
Degrees: B.A., UW-Madison
M.A., Ohio University
Ph.D., Ohio University
Chair of Information and Computing Science