- Honorary Degree (2011)
- Doctor of Humane Letters
- Richmond, Indiana
- Presenter: Michael A. McRobbie
- IUPUI Spirit of Philanthropy Award (2006)
Douglas Bennett grew up in Rochester, New York and graduated from Haverford College in 1968. He obtained his M.Phil and his Ph.D. in Political Science from Yale University. Bennett taught political science at Temple University from 1973 to 1989.
Bennett was vice president and chief operating officer of the American Council of Learned Societies in New York City. He was also the Vice President and Provost at Reed College (Portland, Oregon) and has served on several education-related organizations, such as the National Association of Independent Colleges and Universities (NAICU) or the National Advisory Board of the National Survey of Student Engagement (NSSE).
From 1997 to 2011, Bennett was the president of Earlham College. He served on the Board of Advisors to the IU East campus and on the Board of Directors to the National Survey of Student Engagement, housed at IU Bloomington. As the 16th president of Earlham, Bennett made a strong commitment to the college's role in the local community. His role as a civic leader was solidified with the creation of his "Earlham Forums," which focused on community issues. He enhanced the student-centered mission of the college while upgrading facilities. His leadership in development raised more funds in the college's capital campaign than any previous campaign in the school's history.