|Dr. Robert Ivany|
University of St. Thomas
Dr. Robert Ivany became the eighth president of the University of St. Thomas in 2004. This comprehensive Catholic university in the heart of Houston has dedicated itself to the vision of becoming one of the great Catholic universities in America.
Prior to his retirement from the Army with the rank of Major General, Ivany presided over one of the nation’s most respected institutions for the education of strategic leaders: the U.S. Army War College in Carlisle, Pa. There for three years, he instituted programs to develop the next generation of military and civilian leaders from the United States and 42 foreign countries to meet the challenges of cultural change, organizational transformation and a drastically altered national security environment.
Serving as the commandant (president) of the War College capped Ivany’s 34 year career in the Army. During his various commands as an armored cavalry officer, he led soldiers in the United States, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, the Federal Republic of Germany and Vietnam where he was wounded in action and decorated for valor.
When not assigned to troop units, he assisted several nations in the transformation of their armed forces. In 1990, Ivany was the first senior military officer invited to Hungary to contribute to the democratization of their defense establishment. He lived in Saudi Arabia and Kuwait with his family, advising military and civilian leaders on the modernization of their military forces following Desert Storm. In Kuwait, he headed the American effort with a team of 45 advisors managing a $1.2 billion program to improve their education, training and logistics.
Ivany also served in a number of unique positions including the Army Aide to the President of the United States from 1984 to 1986 and an assistant professor of history and football coach at the Military Academy at West Point.
After completing his Army service in October 2003, he joined the faculty of the Graduate School of Business, Columbia University as an adjunct professor in Executive Education working with senior executives in Great Britain, Canada and the United States in leader development, strategic planning and cultural change. He has spoken on the topic of leadership development to non-profit, corporate and civic organizations. His article “Soldiers and Legislators: A Common Mission” received the General Dwight D. Eisenhower Award for Excellence in Military Writing.
Ivany serves on the Board of Directors for The International Council of the Universities of St. Thomas Aquinas, Independent Colleges and Universities of Texas, Greater Houston Partnership, Sam Houston Area Council-Boy Scouts of America, The Health Museum and as Immediate Past Chairman of Mental Health America of Greater Houston.
Ivany has received the Ellis Island Medal of Freedom, the Humanitarian Medal from the Chapel of the Four Chaplains Association, the Americanism Award from the Daughters of the American Revolution, the George Washington Award for Distinguished Service from the Sons of the American Revolution, the Director’s Award from the United States Secret Service, the Admiral Thomas J. Hamilton Award for Leadership and, together with his spouse, the Aaron and Hur Award from the United States Army Chaplaincy. He was named a distinguished graduate of St. Ignatius High School, Cleveland, Ohio, and has earned numerous military awards.
In addition to earning a Bachelor of Science degree from the U.S. Military Academy, he received a Ph.D. in History from the University of Wisconsin in Madison.