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FNR Alumna Dr. Leslie Holland-Bartels Receives Old Masters Award

Dr. Leslie Holland-Bartels, who earned her PhD in fisheries at Purdue in 1980, is one of 10 individuals selected as an Old Masters award winner in 2019. The Old Masters Program was established in 1950 to bring back 10 successful and outstanding individuals to campus for the purpose of sharing ideas and experience with the student body.
  • Bachelor of Science in Marine Fisheries – Umass 1975
  • Master of Science in Fisheries and Statistics – LSU 1977
  • PhD in Fisheries – Purdue 1980
  • Received a Purdue Distinguished Agricultural Alumni Award 2006
  • Retired as Alaska Regional Director of the U.S. Geological Survey
  • Acted as science liaison to the Exxon Valdez Oil Spill Trustee Council for more than 20 years
  • Receive Meritorious & Distinguished Service Awards from the U.S. Department of the Interior
“It was a surprise when I got the phone call,” Holland-Bartels said. When I had the opportunity to talk to them, I was absolutely blown away with the effort that they went through to find me and that someone had nominated me because you really don't think ... you are not special. You grow up, you do your work and you're not special. And to come here and engage with the other Old Masters has just been... I am blown away. And interacting with the other students has been just joyous. So, I am very happy ... And it is a very different honor. It is a collective honor of your life and your legacy from Purdue. And so I think it means a lot more.”

To learn more about Holland-Bartels, her experiences at Purdue and her advice for current and future students, watch the video below.
Holland Bartels is the second member of the Forestry and Natural Resources department to be honored as an Old Master, following alumni Charles Owubah, who was a member of the 2016 Old Masters class. Owubah, the former vice president of World Vision International and now CEO of Action Against Hunger, earned his master's in natural resources management in 1992 and his PhD in natural resources management and policy in 1999.

In the nearly 70 years since, more than 600 individuals have been a part of the Old Masters Program. According to the Old Masters’ website, “an Old Master is an exceptional person who has made significant contributions to his or her own field,” and the program “aims to connect distinguished professionals to theLeslie Holland-Bartels with 2019 Old Masters class student body in order to broaden perspectives, promote excellence and inspire generations to move the world forward as Boilermakers. Each year a committee of 12 Purdue students and three faculty advisors plan the program.

The full 2019 class of Old Masters also included: Orlando Ashford, Leslie Bottorff, Andre Hughes, Tom Morales, Colleen Novius, Mark O’Hare, Patti Poppe, Dale Pupillo and Libby Richards.

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