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Two professors named to endowed chairs

By Kyle Schut '13
August 6, 2012

Robert Hanson

Two St. Olaf College faculty members have been named to endowed chairs.

Professor of Religion John Barbour has been named the O.C. and Patricia Boldt Distinguished Teaching Professor in the Humanities, and Professor of Chemistry Robert Hanson has been named the Edolph A. Larson and Truman E. Anderson Sr. Chair of Chemistry.

Hanson, who joined the St. Olaf faculty in 1986, earned a B.S. from the California Institute of Technology, a Ph.D. from Columbia University, and completed postdoctoral work at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Over the course of his career, he has been the recipient of many awards and grants, including those from the National Science Foundation, the National Institutes of Health, the Research Corporation, and the American Chemical Society.

John Barbour

Barbour joined the St. Olaf faculty in 1982 after having earned a B.A. from Oberlin College and an M.A. and Ph.D. from the University of Chicago Divinity School. He was chair of the St. Olaf Religion Department from 1998 to 2001, and served as the first Martin E. Marty Regents Chair in Religion and the Academy (2004–08). He led the Global Semester study-abroad program in 2001–02 and the Term in Asia program in 2008–09.

The Larson-Anderson Endowed Chair in Chemistry was established in 1988 with gifts from Edolph Larson, a 1914 graduate of St. Olaf, and Truman Anderson, two friends of the college who shared a lifelong career in chemistry.

The Boldt Chair was established in 1994 by contractor Oscar C. Boldt and his wife, Patricia Hamar Boldt. It is offered to a current faculty member whose scholarship and professional endeavors advance the teaching and learning of humanities at the baccalaureate level. 

Contact Kari VanDerVeen at 507-786-3970 or