THE UNIVERSITY OF UTAH

David P. Gardner, former U of U president, dies at 90

Jan 3, 2024, 11:00 AM | Updated: May 30, 2024, 8:51 am

Gardner speaks at the inauguration for Ruth V. Watkins, the 16th president of the University of Uta...

Gardner speaks at the inauguration for Ruth V. Watkins, the 16th president of the University of Utah, was held Friday, Sept. 21, 3 p.m. in Kingsbury Hall on the U campus, Salt Lake City, Utah. (The University of Utah)

(The University of Utah)

SALT LAKE CITY — Former University of Utah President David P. Gardner died on Tuesday. Deseret News reported that an undisclosed lingering illness caused his death. He was 90 years old. 

Gardner served as the University of Utah’s president from 1973 to 1983. According to the University of Utah, he was its 10th president. 

“President David Gardner was the visionary leader the University of Utah needed at a time of significant growth,” said Taylor Randall, the school’s current president. 

According to the University of Utah, Gardner worked to establish higher admission standards during his tenure at the University of Utah.

He also expanded the university’s research efforts by raising the budget significantly. 

The significant salary increases that Gardner provided to university faculty “[made] the U competitive with the nation’s top research universities,” according to the University of Utah. 

Gardner also helped secure $50 million for the University of Utah’s hospital and medical school. The funding led to increased enrollment in the university’s medical programs and medical breakthroughs, such as the first artificial heart transplant, according to the University of Utah. 

The career of David P. Gardner

Gardner received a B.S. in Political Science, History, and Geography from Brigham Young University. He later earned an M.A. in Political Science and a Ph.D. in Higher Education from the University of California, Berkeley. 

Early in his career, Gardner worked as an assistant chancellor and education faculty member at the University of California, Santa Barbara. 

Gardner became the chancellor-executive assistant at the University of California, Santa Barbara in 1969. According to the University of Utah, “he is credited with playing a key role in keeping communications open during the riots that broke out on campus in 1970.” 

According to the University of California, Santa Barbara, students were protesting the Vietnam War at the time. 

Following his tenure at the University of Utah, Gardner served as the president of the University of California’s nine schools. 

When Gardner departed from his position at the University of Utah, a building on President’s Circle was renamed in his honor. Gardner Hall currently functions as the home of the University of Utah’s School of Music. Additionally, the concert hall in the heart of the building is named for his wife, Libby. 

Throughout his career, Gardner advocated for improving the U.S. public school system and prioritizing undergraduate studies. He gained national attention through his work, publishing several works. 

Related: 

 

 

 

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Send it to the KSL NewsRadio team here.

The University of Utah

Tony Hawk is set to make an appearance at the Tony Hawk's Vert Alert skating competition....

Josuee Sanchez

Tony Hawk event sparking a desire to skate

Tony Hawk is visiting Utah for the Tony Hawk's Vert Alert skating competition, and it' sparking a desire for people to learn to skate.

4 days ago

The Utah Prison Education Project has officially accepted 15 students. They now can pursue their ag...

Emma Keddington

Utah Prison Education Project accepts first class of students

The Utah Prison Education Project has admitted 15 students in the project's first effort to help inmates earn their degree.

6 days ago

Chris Jay and and "Army of Freshmen" from Ventura, California play Kilby Court Sunday June 15, 2003...

Josuee Sanchez

Heavy metal isn’t as damaging to the voice as you may think

Heavy Metal singers might sound like they're screaming, but it's not damaging their voices the way a normal scream might.

8 days ago

Rare earth minerals...

Don Brinkerhoff

U. researchers ask: Is it worth mining rare-earth minerals in eastern Utah and western Colorado?

University of Utah researchers are asking for grant money to see if there are enough rare-earth minerals in Utah and Colorado worth extracting.

17 days ago

Rare earth minerals...

Don Brinkerhoff

Rare earth minerals found in Utah, Colorado, are critical for cleaner energy sources

Rare earth minerals have been found in Utah and Colorado mines according to University of Utah researchers.

21 days ago

students walk on the U of U campus,...

Aimee Cobabe

University of Utah changes policy on tuition coverage for student employees

The University of Utah is changing its policy on covering tuition costs for employees. Not everyone is pleased with this change.

24 days ago

Sponsored Articles

Underwater shot of the fisherman holding the fish...

Bear Lake Convention and Visitors Bureau

Your Bear Lake fishing guide

Bear Lake offers year-round fishing opportunities. By preparing ahead of time, you might go home with a big catch!

A group of people cut a purple ribbon...

Comcast

Comcast announces major fiber network expansion in Utah

Comcast's commitment to delivering extensive coverage signifies a monumental leap toward a digitally empowered future for Utahns.

a doctor putting her hand on the chest of her patient...

Intermountain Health

Intermountain nurse-midwives launch new gynecology access clinic

An access clinic launched by Intermountain nurse-midwives provides women with comprehensive gynecology care.

Young couple hugging while a realtor in a suit hands them keys in a new home...

Utah Association of Realtors

Buying a home this spring? Avoid these 5 costly pitfalls

By avoiding these pitfalls when buying a home this spring, you can ensure your investment will be long-lasting and secure.

a person dressed up as a nordic viking in a dragon boat resembling the bear lake monster...

Bear Lake Convention and Visitors Bureau

The Legend of the Bear Lake Monster

The Bear Lake monster has captivated people in the region for centuries, with tales that range from the believable to the bizarre.

...

Live Nation Concerts

All the artists coming to Utah First Credit Union Amphitheatre (formerly USANA Amp) this summer

Summer concerts are more than just entertainment; they’re a celebration of life, love, and connection.

David P. Gardner, former U of U president, dies at 90