Ahlberg memorial service set for Feb. 25

9:51:07 AM CDT - Wednesday, February 14, 2007

By Amy Geiszler-Jones

A memorial service that will celebrate Clark Ahlberg’s presidency at WSU and recall some of his and his late wife’s favorite music will be held at 2 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 25, in Wiedemann Recital Hall.

Clark Ahlberg, who had been one of WSU’s longest-serving presidents, died in Gig Harbor, Wash., on Jan. 26 at age 88.

During his presidency at WSU from 1968 until his retirement in 1983, President Ahlberg directed his alma mater’s significant growth in several areas. During the memorial service, his accomplishments will be celebrated in a building that had its genesis during his presidency. A strong supporter of the arts at WSU, President Ahlberg acquired the gift for WSU’s Marcussen organ and laid the groundwork to build Wiedemann Recital Hall to house the organ.

George Platt, a retired faculty member who had known Dr. Ahlberg since both were at Syracuse University, will talk about the campus’ growth during the Ahlberg presidency. Ahlberg recruited Platt to oversee that growth.

Fran Jabara, who founded the Center for Entrepreneurship, one of the first such centers in the country, during Ahlberg’s presidency, will talk about Ahlberg’s relationships, faculty development and his work with college deans. Jabara was both a faculty member and a dean during the Ahlberg era.

President Ahlberg was preceded in death by his wife, Rowena, who died five years to the day before her husband, and their son, John. After her death, President Ahlberg had moved to Gig Harbor, Wash., where his son, Tom, and his wife live. He is also survived by daughter Val Jeanne Banta of Novato, Calif.

Memorials may be made to either the Clark and Rowena Ahlberg Scholarship for Student Support Services or the Clark and Rowena Ahlberg Scholarship Fund at the WSU Foundation, 1845 Fairmount, Wichita, KS, 67260-0002.

An expanded obituary can be found at http://webs.wichita.edu/dt/insidewsu/show/article.asp?770.

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