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University President Named Richardson’s Citizen of the Year

Dr. David E. Daniel

Dr. David E. Daniel

The Richardson Chamber of Commerce has named UT Dallas President David E. Daniel its Citizen of the Year for guiding the University during a time of unprecedented development and generating a $1.8 billion impact on the North Texas economy. 

The award, given annually since 1965, is presented to an individual who has gone above and beyond in helping the Richardson community grow and prosper. 

Chamber President Bill Sproull and Joe Costantino, 2014 chairman of the board, surprised Daniel with the award in his office because the UT Dallas president was scheduled to be at a UT System Board of Regents meeting when the chamber’s annual meeting was held.

“I am totally surprised,” Daniel said of receiving the award. “I know some of the people who have received this in the past. What a tremendous honor. 

“We refer to ourselves as The University of Texas at Dallas in Richardson, and, indeed, it’s a great partnership we’ve had with the city of Richardson. So I view this as affirmation of many years of great work with a lot of people involved. It really is an honor, and I express my sincere appreciation to the chamber.” 

Sproull said choosing this year’s recipient was an easy decision for the selection committee because of the tremendous growth of UT Dallas under Daniel’s tenure. 

Daniel’s wife, Susan, and son, Alex, accepted the award for him at the chamber’s annual meeting. 

Since Daniel became the University’s fourth president in 2005, UT Dallas has contributed to the region’s economy by facilitating new research and drawing students and visitors to the area, as well as through employment and operations spending. 

Under his leadership, UT Dallas has initiated or completed $700 million in construction of new buildings and infrastructure, adding more than 3 million square feet of new or renovated interior space to campus. These include:

  • The Edith O’Donnell Arts and Technology Building that houses programs in arts and technology, visual arts, emerging media and communications, as well as a 1,200-seat lecture hall.
     
  • Five residence halls built since 2009, including a second dining hall and recreation center. About 4,700 students now live on campus in residence halls and apartments.
     
  • Since 2005, UT Dallas has added 50 new academic programs and raised more than $360 million in private funds. Enrollment has grown from 13,000 to 23,000 students. Full-time faculty and staff now number 2,770, with more than 6,400 total employees, including student workers, work study and part-time workers. 

Daniel has advocated widely for UT Dallas to become one of the nation’s top research universities. The approach he suggested for creating more top-tier research universities in Texas led to two legislative initiatives that pumped more than $600 million into this effort. Daniel’s work on this legislation led to his selection as a finalist for “Texan of the Year” by The Dallas Morning News in 2009. 

We refer to ourselves as The University of Texas at Dallas in Richardson, and, indeed, it’s a great partnership we’ve had with the city of Richardson. So I view this as affirmation of many years of great work with a lot of people involved. It really is an honor, and I express my sincere appreciation to the chamber.

Dr. David E. Daniel,
UT Dallas president

The University’s graduates and student interns annually provide Richardson and the Dallas-Fort Worth area with a pool of highly skilled job candidates in the sciences, technology, management, public affairs and criminal justice. Many corporations in the Richardson Tech Corridor and throughout the area regularly hire UT Dallas graduates. 

More than 5,500 international students representing more than 100 countries call UT Dallas home, attracting worldwide interest in the area and contributing to one of the chamber’s top priorities for Richardson.

Students give back to the community as well. Through the Office of Student Volunteerism, more than 5,200 UT Dallas students contributed about 9,220 service hours to make a difference in the community. The net worth of their hours is valued at $208,010. 

Clayton Oliphint, senior pastor of the First United Methodist Church of Richardson and the 2013 Citizen of the Year, praised the impact UT Dallas has made on Richardson during Daniel’s tenure. 

“All that UTD means to Richardson and to this whole area, the way the profile of the University has been raised over the last decade and more — it’s been an amazing thing to watch happen. It’s a well-deserved honor,” Oliphint said.

Media Contact: The Office of Media Relations, UT Dallas, (972) 883-2155, [email protected].

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