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Simpson Mourns Passing of Former President Lancaster


President Lancaster 1977Simpson College is mourning the loss of former President Richard Bailey Lancaster, who died in Indianapolis on April 15 at age 92. He served as Simpson’s 18th president from 1972-79.

Lancaster and his wife, Reta, enjoyed 70 years of marriage. They were the first to live in Sigler House, which was donated to the College and renovated during his early years as president. He helped strengthen the curriculum and stabilized declining enrollment all colleges were experiencing following the Vietnam War.

The Des Moines Metro Opera was established during his presidency, and he served on its board. Additionally, the Cowles Center was built during his tenure, which ushered in a new level of athletic involvement by Simpson students.

You can read more about President Lancaster’s wonderful life in his obituary here.