Robert J. Stebbins


IUB Athletics Hall of Fame (2000)
Z.G. Clevenger Award (1990)
B.S., 1951
E. Ross Bartley Award (1989)
Location: Bloomington
Presenter: Thomas Ehrlich
School of Nursing Special Recognition Award (1978)
Indiana University Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI)


Robert J. Stebbins was a native of Mishawaka, Indiana. His college education occurred between two tours of service in the Armed Forces, the first as a soldier in Germany just after high school. He earned two varsity letters in football, receiving a B.S. degree from Indiana University in 1951, and then went to England as an officer in the Air Force.

Mr. Stebbins worked at IU from 1953 to 1988. He was the director of the S.E.E.K. program in the Career Placement Support Services when he retired, and had also worked for the IU Athletic Department, IU Alumni Association, and the IU Foundation. While serving as IU Alumni Association Field Secretary, he worked closely with Claude Rich on the development of the administrative structure and concept of the Varsity Club. Mr. Stebbins became the first director of the Varsity Club in 1953 and served until 1968. At the IU Foundation, he was called upon by the University's 150th Birthday Fund, where he served with Claude Rich and Joe Butcher as Executive Associate for the Fund, contributing in important ways to the great success of that campaign. During more than a third of a century of dedicated service, Mr. Stebbins served for five university presidents.

As active as Mr. Stebbins was at IU, his commitment far exceeded the university borders, and he was extremely active in the city of Bloomington and Monroe County with equal dedication. Mr. Stebbins was involved in at least 30 organizations, including the Bloomington Chamber of Commerce, the Bloomington Downtown Kiwanis Club and the Monroe County Community School Corp. Athletic Advisory Council. He served as the Republican precinct committeeman from 1970-73, as well as the Republican precinct representative to the State Convention during the same years. He also served as tournament director of the United States Wrestling World Team Trials.

Of Mr. Stebbins, President Ehrlich said, "The range of Bob's activities match the range of his interests, his abilities, and his commitments. His efforts have benefited people of all ages within and outside Indiana University."