WMU News

Aviation Dean Lyman returns to Kellogg Foundation

Aug. 30, 2002

KALAMAZOO -- A new interim dean of the Western Michigan University College of Aviation will take over next week when Gregory A. Lyman, who has served as dean of the college since January, resumes full time his W.K. Kellogg Foundation post.

Robert Aardema, associate professor of aviation and a faculty member since 1979, will lead the college while the University concludes a search for a permanent dean, WMU President Elson S. Floyd announced today. The change is effective Sept. 1. Lyman has been on loan from the Kellogg Foundation, where he is senior vice president and corporate secretary. While serving as aviation dean, he retained his foundation position and split his time between the two organizations.

"We are enormously grateful to the Kellogg Foundation and its president and CEO Bill Richardson for allowing Greg to work with us over the past eight months," said Floyd. "This has been a time of great uncertainty in the aviation industry and Greg's leadership has been invaluable in helping the college adjust to the changing realities of the aviation professions."

Lyman will continue to serve as chairman of the college's advisory board.

Aardema has a background that includes work in both flight and aviation maintenance operations. He was first a pilot and then a maintenance officer in the U.S. Air Force from 1969 to 1975, and he served for 17 years in the Michigan Air National Guard as a pilot, flight instructor and flight commander. He also worked in private industry as a pilot and flight manager.

"I'm honored to serve in this capacity," said Aardema after being asked to become interim dean. "I've been affiliated with this college for more than 25 years, and I have a deep interest in our programs and a real conviction that we are a world-class organization. I'll do my best to ensure that we continue to maintain and even improve our fine reputation in the aviation industry."

He earned a bachelor's degree in mathematics from Hope College in 1969 and a master's degree in manufacturing administration from WMU in 1985. He also earned a diploma from the U.S. Air Force Command and Staff College in 1989.

Media contact: Cheryl Roland, 269 387-8400, cheryl.roland@wmich.edu

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