By Bryce Hoffman
The university paid tribute to former chancellor, William T. Hogan
, with the unveiling of space on campus that will serve as a testament to his visionary leadership for future generations of River Hawks.
Hogan, who began his career at the university as a professor of mechanical engineering
, served as UMass Lowell’s first chancellor from 1991 to 2006 and was president of the University of Lowell for 10 years prior to that. Known as “the father of UMass Lowell,” Hogan helped lead the university through a merger, engineered its entry into the UMass system and helped launch several economic revitalization initiatives with the city of Lowell. He died in 2017 at age 84.
Moloney said naming the dean’s suite in his honor brought Hogan’s career full circle.
“His talents carried him into the ranks of leadership, but he never lost the problem-solving mind of an engineer and he always kept the heart of a teacher,” she said. “How fitting, then, that we would honor a lifetime inventor and reinventor by naming the dean’s suite in our College of Engineering for him, here where it all began.”
Hogan’s zeal for his work and his love of the university never waned, his daughter Colleen Hogan-Mazzola recalled in remarks to the family members, friends and former colleagues gathered for the virtual event.
“When I say that my dad loved his job it is but an understatement at best. He is, was, and remains the only person I’ve known who was joyful on Sunday evenings, knowing that Monday morning and the next workday were close,” she said.
Hogan-Mazzola said according to family lore, on the day he began teaching at the university in 1963, Hogan’s young son buried the car keys somewhere in the yard, never to be found again.
“Being an engineer, my dad was able to rewire the car, so he made it to his first class on time,” she said.
Less than a decade later, Hogan became the first dean of the College of Engineering on his way to vice president, president and chancellor.
In his remarks, Meehan credited Hogan for laying the groundwork for UMass Lowell’s emergence as a national research university and as a driving force for the prosperity of its host city and region.
“Among his greatest legacies are his success at attracting some of the world’s best faculty to Lowell and his understanding that this university and city needed each other. He saw to it that they rose together. When I became chancellor, we were perfectly positioned to grow,” Meehan said.
The event raised funds for the William T. Hogan Scholarship Fund for Innovation and Engagement, which has provided scholarships for more than a dozen deserving students since its inception.