KU News Release
March 11, 2011
Contact: Paula Naughtin, School of Education, 785-864-3758
Pioneering KU disability researcher, colleagues win Dole Humanitarian Award
LAWRENCE — Richard Schiefelbusch and his collaborators over the past 50 years of his career at the University of Kansas will receive the third annual Robert Dole Humanitarian Award.
KU has been the home to some of the most significant researchers and innovators in the world who have made the study of individuals with developmental disabilities their life work. Schiefelbusch was appointed director of the Bureau of Child Research in 1956. For the next 50 years, he developed a collaboration model that would bring together young and experienced scholars who shared his vision and commitment to achieving a better quality of life for individuals with disabilities and their families. While initially focused on the children of Kansas, it soon changed to address the needs of individuals with disabilities wherever they might be. The work of his many collaborators culminated in the establishment of the Schiefelbusch Institute for Life Span Studies in 1991.
A dinner reception will be held in their honor in April at the Dole Institute of Politics.
The Dole Humanitarian Award, given by KU’s Department of Special Education, recognizes individuals with Kansas connections whose efforts have enhanced the quality of life of individuals with disabilities and their families. The inaugural award was presented in 2008 to native Kansan and former U.S. Sen. Robert Dole in recognition of his lifetime of distinguished public service to the disability community. Ross and Marianna Beach were the second recipients of the award in 2009.
KU’s Department of Special Education has been repeatedly ranked No. 1 in the nation through independent research and annual national surveys. U.S. News and World Report recently ranked the department as the No. 1 special education program amongst public universities.
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