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Stewart, Robert Bruce



  • Existence: March 31, 1896 - June 11, 1988

Biographical Information

R. B. Stewart joined the staff of Purdue University in 1925 as the controller. At that time, Purdue enrolled 3,000 students, the physical plant was worth $3 million, and the endowment totaled $340,000. Twenty years later, Stewart was named Vice President and Treasurer. When he retired in 1961, enrollment had grown to 22,000, the physical plant was valued at $160 million, and yields from the $25 million endowment were producing funds for research, scholarships, and grants.

Stewart’s pioneering ways of financing expansion through trust gifts and interest-free bonds enabled Purdue to grow, and our University became the benchmark for every university in the country. Stewart was known as a, “Father of the G.I. Bill,” the post-World War II training programs that brought thousands of returning veterans to campuses across the country and fueled national growth and prosperity.

In 1971, Stewart made a planned gift to Purdue by donating his home, Westwood. It has served as the home of Purdue’s President ever since.

The campus building Stewart Center was named, in part, in his honor.


Cemetery, M., America, N., County, T., Township, W. and Cemetery, M. (2017). Robert Bruce Stewart (1896-1988).

Found in 1 Collection or Record:

Collection of Purdue University Related audio recordings

 Collection — Box: 1
Identifier: MSP 265
Scope and Contents The Collection of Purdue University Related Audio Recordings include audio reel and audio cassette recordings of addresses given by Purdue University professors, administrators, and staff members. Types of materials include: printed material, cassette tapes, reel-to-reel tapes, and digital materials.
Dates: May 7, 1953 - May 12, 1994; Majority of material found within 1971 - 1973