Utah State University still bears the stamp of former president Glen L. Taggart, who died Aug. 10 in Logan at age 83.
Though Taggart left USU in 1979, his 11-year tenure at the school's helm marked a significant course correction still being followed today.He arrived from Michigan State University in 1968 to succeed President Darrell Chase. A keen administrator with a caring personality, he immediately set out to decentralize budgeting and programming, pushing decisionmaking to the lowest levels possible to empower deans and department heads.
That participatory move strengthened and broadened the school's leadership base, for the good of faculty, staff and students.
Respected internationally, Taggart also helped establish Utah State as a research institution and encouraged growth in several departments and schools including natural resources, engineering, education and agriculture. He spearheaded development of the Center for Persons With Disabilities.
Born in Lewiston, Utah, in 1914, Taggart was one of eight children. He attended North Cache High School, Utah State University and earned a doctorate in sociology at University of Wisconsin.
He completed 10 years of service with the Department of Agriculture, helping develop agricultural experiment stations in Central and South America.
It is fitting for the Taggart family and for the USU "family" that the school's student center bears his name as a distinguished friend of the university and of higher education in Utah.