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John A. Buelke

Aug. 17, 2007

John A. Buelke, professor emeritus of teacher education and an authority in the field of elementary education at Western Michigan University, died July 28 in Florida. He was 94.

Buelke came to WMU in 1949 as an associate professor of teacher education and was promoted to professor in 1955. He was a key figure in the development of WMU's graduate-level offerings and retired with emeritus status in 1973.

A Wisconsin native, Buelke served as a consultant to several state school administrations as well as the U.S. Senate Committee on Education and U.S. Department of Education during President Johnson's Administration.

He wrote two books and numerous journal articles as well as wrote and directed several research studies. In addition, he served summers as an education professor at schools such as the universities of Oregon and Mississippi and Wayne State, West Virginia and Utah State universities.

Buelke began his educational career teaching in a one-room rural school. From then until 1949, he served as a teacher, principal, and superintendent in nine different school districts while finishing a bachelor's degree at Oshkosh State Teachers College, a master's degree at Northwestern University and a doctoral degree at the University of Cincinnati.

He had been a resident of Citrus Springs, Fla., since 1980. He and his wife, Virginia, who for many years was WMU's coordinator of student teachers in the Detroit area, designed and help fund the Citrus Springs Memorial Library building.

Media contact: Jeanne Baron, (269) 387-8400, jeanne.baron@wmich.edu

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